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Time to clean house at Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy

The federal government has long been in the consumer protection business. It is a noble cause and one I support. Many may not know the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was assembled from the various existing offices across the government with the intention of making consumer protection more transparent.

What we got instead is an agency that is out of control, covering up a racist and sexist work environment, and bilking taxpayers for lavish expenses.

Over the last several months, I have heard testimony from employees at the bureau describing sexual advances from superiors, talk of African-American employees working on “the planation” for their white supervisors and women suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder because male supervisors were so hostile. We received testimony that Director Richard Cordray personally intervened to cover up these allegations.

Unfortunately for him this is all now public record and the facts are not in dispute.

Additionally, the director himself has misled Congress about the inner workings of the agency. He makes no apologies for spending $149 million taxpayer dollars on a renovation he claimed would only cost $55 million. He also feels it is unnecessary to inform you that this agency is monitoring personal financial information on nearly one billion credit cards.

Do you trust an agency with this much unfettered power?

It is clear the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is a mega-agency in the mold of NSA, only with less accountability. This bad behavior on the part of public servants must be brought to light and the bad actors must be held accountable. Good government groups that are working to clean up the corruption at the bureau should be applauded. It will make the bureau a more effective and trustworthy agency.

A riddle from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website asks, “What do tap water, your glasses and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau all have in common? “

The answer: “They are all better when they are transparent.”

I agree. It’s well past time to make the necessary changes to this toxic agency.

Sean Duffy represents Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District.