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House Republicans Propose Kneecapping CFPB

Firing another salvo at the new Dodd-Frank regulatory regime, House Republicans submitted an appropriations bill last week that proposes slashing $350 million from the ""Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ (CFPB) budget for 2012.

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Released by the ""House Committee on Appropriations"":http://appropriations.house.gov/, the bill offers to cap funding for the ""CFPB"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ at $200 million, keeping to a minimum the sweeping powers that Dodd-Frank invested in the new regulatory agency.

Provisions also threatened to kneecap the Obama administration's 2011 fiscal year budget, striking 23 percent of the funds requested for offices at the ""Treasury Department"":http://www.treasury.gov/Pages/default.aspx, ""Internal Revenue Service"":http://www.irs.gov/, and ""Securities and Exchange Commission"":http://www.sec.gov/.

""This bill exemplifies the commitment of the Republican majority to reduce spending, dig our nation out of record deficits, and rein in unnecessary agency regulation and interference that obstructs economic growth,"" said Hal Rogers (R-Kentucky), chairman for the House Appropriations Committee.

In addition to less-than-expected appropriations, the bill also proposes placing the ""CFPB"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ under the purview of Congress, which critics claim would remove the autonomy afforded to it by an independent source of funding, according to ThinkProgress.com.

The appropriations committee released a statement explaining the move, saying that the ""CFPB"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ ""has not yet been fully constituted and many questions remain as to its authority and mission.""

The new bill adds to the pressure that House Republicans continue to exert on the ""CFPB"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/. Toeing the party-line, 44 Senate Republicans vowed to prevent the confirmation for any nominee for the CFPB ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô even if the nominee is one of their own. CFPB nominee Elizabeth Warren's confirmation process remains without closure, threatening to keep the ""CFPB"":http://www.consumerfinance.gov/ from officially launching without a director in July.

In response to House Republican pressure, recent reports suggest that the Obama administration may withdraw Warren, a controversial professor and Treasury official, in favor of ex-banker Raj Date.

About Author: Ryan Schuette

Ryan Schuette is a journalist, cartoonist, and social entrepreneur with several years of experience in real-estate news, international reporting, and business management. He currently lives in the Washington, D.C., area, where he freelances for DS News and MReport.
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