Senate Should Question Biden’s Choice to Head CFPB, Rohit Chopra, on Fair Process for Regulating Businesses

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The Senate should question President-elect Biden’s nominee to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau out of concern that businesses get fair treatment in the regulatory process – not just arbitrary enforcement, say Competitive Enterprise Institute experts.

Statement by John Berlau, CEI Senior Fellow:

“The CFPB has massive power over community banks, credit unions, and small businesses that extend any form of credit. It also still lacks accountability to Congress, as it receives funding not from the appropriations process, but automatically from the Federal Reserve. Therefore, it is incumbent on the Senate to thoroughly question Rohit Chopra, President-Elect Biden’s expected nominee for CFPB director, on his views on consumer choice, financial privacy, and regulation through a fair process rather than arbitrarily by enforcement.

“During the tenure of the CFPB director Richard Cordray, under whom Chopra served, lawmakers of both parties expressed concern about CFPB mandates on community banks and credit unions. The U.S Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia also ruled unanimously in PHH v. CFPB (2016) that the CFPB’s retroactive application of its new interpretation of a law violated the Constitution’s guarantee of due process and flunked ‘Rule of Law, 101.’ The Senate must grill Chopra to help ensure the CFPB does not revert back to these policies procedures of the Corday era that received bipartisan condemnation.”

Statement by Devin Watkins, CEI attorney

“Rohit Chopra’s push while at the FTC to expand penalties against for-profit schools, franchises, Facebook, and gig economy companies was the wrong way to go. So it is good that the Supreme Court in Seila Law ensured that the CFPB director will be accountable to the President. If there is enough public outcry against heavy-handed regulator tactics due to the harms they cause, President Biden will be able to rein that in.”

Related commentary: Why Hasn’t Trump Fired CFPB’s Cordray?