The AP recently claimed the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)—now under the leadership of White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney—boasts a “cozier relationship between industry and regulator.”
But what about Richard Cordray’s CFPB? For years, the agency maintained a cozy relationship with activist groups hell-bent on punishing payday lenders and other industries.
One example is the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), which routinely secured closed-door meetings with Cordray’s team. The group even provided an initial draft of a proposed small-dollar lending rule to the CFPB. According to a Politico report:
The Center for Responsible Lending spent hours consulting with senior Obama administration officials, giving input on how to implement the rule that would restrict the vast majority of short-term loans with interest rates often higher than 400 percent. The group regularly sent over policy papers, traded emails and met multiple times with top officials responsible for drafting the rule.
The National Consumer Law Center—another liberal advocacy group—“worked with the agency to help craft the [payday] proposal.” That’s right: Under Cordray, special interest groups effectively formalized government mandates worth tens of millions of dollars.