Mulvaney Mulls Option of Moving CFPB Into Basement. Or Dallas.

CFPB Acting Director Mick MulvaneyRon Sachs/Zumapress

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

What a piece of work these guys are:

Mick Mulvaney says he’s legally barred from shutting down the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a regulator he once called a “sick” joke.
But the agency’s acting director could move dozens of employees to the basement of its Washington headquarters. And he might try to relocate other staff members to Dallas.

….The analysis put together by Mulvaney’s advisers lays out multiple ways to trim the budget over the next two years. Requiring CFPB staff “without a business need to work in an office” to stay home could save as much as $18.3 million, while shared desks might reduce expenditures by another $18.3 million. Adding 70 work spaces in the basement of the CFPB’s main Washington building may save $16.6 million, and relocating staff to Dallas would decrease spending by $2.4 million.

Remember when Republicans effectively shut down the National Labor Relations Board by refusing to confirm enough members for it to have a quorum? And when they refused to allow a vote on any nominees to fill vacancies on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals? And when they first tried to sabotage the CFPB by blocking any confirmation of a director?

There’s not much more they can do on the CFPB front, and they can’t literally shutter the agency, so instead they’ve decided to make life miserable for its staff while they effectively halt its operation:

This is what the supposed working-class warriors of the Trump administration think of an agency that was designed to protect consumers from Wall Street. So far they have:

  • Sabotaged health care for the working class.
  • Effectively prevented the CFPB from reining in big banks.
  • Passed a big tax cut for the rich and big corporations.
  • Sided with payday lenders.
  • Implemented a tax increase on anything containing steel or aluminum.
  • Dismantled net neutrality as a gift to big broadband carriers.
  • Killed a plan to expand overtime pay.

There’s more, but I’m too lazy to keep going. Someone (*cough* Democrats *cough*) probably ought to drill all this into the heads of the working class folks who voted for Trump and his Republican enablers. So far the wealthy have done great under Trump, but the working class has gotten bupkis.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest