May 13, 2020

Van Hollen, Jones Call for Investigation into Improper Political Influence on Repeal of Federal Payday Lending Rule

U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Doug Jones (D-Ala.), along with several of their colleagues, are calling for Federal Reserve Board Inspector General Mark Bialek to open an investigation into the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) rulemaking process that led to the repeal of the Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans Rule (Payday Rule). Joining the Senators in the letter are Senators Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.). 

“Recent press reports detail a CFPB rulemaking process that, if true, flagrantly violates the Administrative Procedure Act’s (APA) requirements—in which political appointees exerted improper influence, manipulated or misinterpreted economic research, and overruled career staff to support a predetermined outcome,” wrote the Senators in their letter.

The letter continues, “In light of these disturbing allegations, we ask that you investigate to determine whether the Bureau’s process for reconsidering and repealing the 2017 Payday Rule violated the Administrative Procedures Act or other federal laws and regulations.”

The full text of the letter is available here.