October 9th, 2009
04:05 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama pushes consumer protection agency

Palin argues against the president's health care proposals in a new Op-Ed.
Palin argues against the president's health care proposals in a new Op-Ed.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) – President Obama on Friday made his strongest push yet for the creation of a new consumer protection agency, lashing out against those who have lobbied hard to stand in its way.

The Obama administration sent Congress its proposal for a Consumer Financial Protection Agency in late June. The proposal has been met with disdain from banks and big business.

"They're doing what they always do - descending on Congress and using every bit of influence they have to maintain a status quo that has maximized their profits at the expense of American consumers," Obama said in televised remarks made at the White House. "That's why we need a Consumer Financial Protection Agency that will stand up not for big banks and financial firms, but for hardworking Americans."

Banks succeeded last month in stripping out of the bill a provision that would have required banks and others to offer uncomplicated financial products, like easy-to-understand applications for 30-year-fixed mortgages, as alternatives to more complex ones.


The president reserved his harshest criticism for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which he said "is spending millions on an ad campaign to kill" the proposal. The Chamber of Commerce launched an ad campaign opposing the proposal, featuring a butcher and baker concerned about its possible impact on their businesses.

"This, of course, is completely false - and we've made clear that only businesses that offer financial services would be affected by this agency," Obama argued.

The agency would set more transparent rules for financial institutions to ensure that consumers get help in understanding the terms of their loans and agreements. But banks have opposed another regulator that some believe could threaten the soundness of financial institutions.

"We disagree that a massive new federal agency with unprecedented powers over vast segments of the business community will be good for consumers," said David Hirschmann, CEO of the U.S. Chamber Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness, in a statement. "The proposed CFPA will exacerbate the weaknesses of the current system that clearly failed, restrict access to credit and make it more costly for consumers and businesses."

Still, the White House and many in Congress are undeterred. The House Financial Services Committee is set to hold a hearing on Wednesday.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (74 Responses)
  1. Meidy

    Hard working Americans don't need this. Hard working Americans pay their bills and take responsibility. No, this is for the cut or two beneath hard working Americans. Another safety net to compensate for poor choices. But hard working Americans are involved.....they PAY for the safety net. This guy's a joke.......

    October 9, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  2. GI Joe

    Something had better happen – if there are no jobs, where will the money come from to give our congress a raise in January? How can we pay for their health care if we have no home, high interest, no insurance?

    October 9, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  3. Kevin Howard

    People need to realize that these financial institutions do NOT have the best interest of consumers as their primary objective. Any program or agency that keeps them honest is well worth it. And any congressperson that votes against the establishment of an agency to provide oversight is in the pockets of said institutions. And any of the drivel that comes out about how oversight will hurt the consumer is just that: drivel.

    October 9, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  4. S M R

    Thank You President Obama for getting to the bottom of CORRUPTION by the very same Agencies that nearly destroyed the American Taxpayer.

    October 9, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  5. victim of republican greed

    With the TARP money from Bush, banks and their CEO's have become the worst group to commit welfare fraud on the taxpayers, intent on destroying America.

    October 9, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  6. victim of republican greed

    It doesn't hurt to have regulations.

    October 9, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  7. montag24

    The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has outlived its usefulness. Kudos to Nike and Apple for quitting them.

    If Obama really wants to do something positive for consumers, put Ralhp Nader in charge of the agency.

    October 9, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  8. montag24

    The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has outlived its usefulness. Kudos to Nike and Apple for quitting them.

    If Obama really wants to do something positive for consumers, put Ralph Nader in charge of the agency.

    October 9, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  9. ICARE

    Who is responsible for giving someone Nobel award? I'm starting to think that they just want America to kill each other over it.

    October 9, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  10. Paul F

    So then it's settled – the banks own the democrat party.

    October 9, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  11. victim of republican greed

    Rush, the drug using Taliban
    Did not want to cut short his supply
    So he became an anti American
    To maintain his perpetual high

    October 9, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  12. Republican

    Here's a challenge to each of you:

    If you write something that is only a whiny little complaint, then don't post it.

    The pathetic little retards (on each side) are SICKENING! You little rejects need to get the hell out of OUR country! If you think because you are a republican I do not condemn you for being a worthless complainer, then check yourself you pathetic reject! Same goes for you elitist left freaks!

    Stop complaining, grab a shovel, and beat the hell out of the first little retard that complains rather then works! (republican, democrat or independant...makes no matter).

    October 9, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  13. Ray

    I am opposed to any new federal bureaucracy. They are an inefficient, self sustaining waste of taxpayer money and they never accomplish the goals for which they were established. The recent "housing bubble" was caused by the congress with the bill that created Fannie
    Mae and Freddie Mac during the Carter administration, and nurtured by congressmen Barney Frank and Christopher Dodd. The activities of financial institutions was not only allowed by the government, they urged lenders to loosen the rules even more just before the meltdown. Anything that has "govt." stamped on it becomes a bottomless pit of inefficient bureaucracy. Only private enterprise with self regulation can continue the economic growth of this nation.

    October 9, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  14. Elise from Virginia

    There is finally a voice out there for the average consumer. We just purchased our first home. During this process, it became obvious that buyers were expected to sign on the dotted line and cross their fingers that no one was trying to take advantage of them. We spent hours carefully going over contracts written in a language no layman could possibly unravel.
    Only many questions and lots of research saved us from a lender which flagrantly cheated its customers, and those contracts designed to protect the builders and the lenders, and left the buyers out in the cold. Even after our "education", we still had to sign documents that we felt were unfair, because "this is the way it's done".
    I am hoping Obama has his way with this one.

    October 9, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  15. Alex

    vicious rumour that Glenn Beck raped and murdered a young girl in 1990. I don't claim to know the truth - only that the rumor floating around saying that Glenn Beck raped and murdered a young girl in 1990 should be discussed. So I want to do my part to try and help get to the bottom of this. Why won't Glenn Beck deny these allegations? I wouldn't accuse Glenn Beck of raping and murdering a young girl in 1990 – in fact, I think he didn't! But I can't help but wonder, since he has failed to deny these horrible allegations. Why won't he deny that he raped and killed a young girl in 1990?

    October 9, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  16. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    It would be nice but the Republicans will try and stop any help for the American people! They want all the money for themselves, and even if it destroys our country, the Republicans will ensure it will happen!

    October 9, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  17. D.Smith

    I applaud Pres. Obama on his Nobel Peace Prize, and I do not understand people saying they don't understand what he has done to deserve this, well you have to look at what he has done with his life, in chicago senate, and especially in this nation, with everything going on in this nation with the economic downfall( which by the way he did not cause) banks failing, car companies failing, big busines failing, healthcare issues, and the war going on in two fronts, for the man to still stay strong, and confident, and still hold this nation together is cause enough for him to recieve this award, so I once more applaud, and congratulate him. I also wonder if all this uproar would be going on if was a white man, because I am sure it would be different if he was white.

    October 9, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  18. Ridgeway

    You're wrong on this one Mr. Finn. This guy is President because a lot of shallow thinking voters thought it would be cool to have a Black guy as President. No matter he was and is not qualified.
    He thought he could use that "cool" dude crap to get the Olympics for Chicago to repay his cronies for favors rendered and the IOC saw right through it.
    Why not give it to Petraeus? He's done more to bring peace to Iraq than Hussein. Jimmy Carter is a moron but at least he earned the award with the Camp David Accord, etc.
    This really sucks.

    October 9, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  19. No Hillary = No Obama

    This guy just won the Nobel Peace Prize for nothing more than yapping a good game. The Nobel Peace Prize has been reduced to a political trophy thanks to "The Mouth" that spews words. I wonder how this got influenced and what behind the scenes strings got pulled. This is truly a joke/

    October 9, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  20. John

    @@@ victim of republican greed October 9th, 2009 4:23 pm ET

    Rush, the drug using Taliban
    Did not want to cut short his supply
    So he became an anti American
    To maintain his perpetual high
    _________________________

    WELL SAID......... :)

    October 9, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  21. John

    RUSH LIMBAUGH is a TERRORIST who wants to HARM and DESTROY America, Because:
    1. He is a Single Track Minded not Rational.
    2. He Criticizes the Democratically Elected President, with no Logic.
    3. He is a paid STOOGE.
    4. He is a DRUG ADDICT.
    5. He has no EDUCATIONAL QUALIFICATIONS.
    6. He is BIASED for GOP, therefore his views are not Prudent.

    October 9, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  22. Moderate Democrat

    I am opposed to any republican in office. It has been proven that everything they touch turns to &^%T!

    October 9, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  23. Vets4Obama

    Ray ray. That's a very nobel (although delusional) 'hope' of yours. It's been proven though that the private sector will NOT regulate itself, as proven by the banking industry, health care industry and government defense contractors.

    We need the government to set rules that the private sector operates by, and watch the private sector like a hawk to ensure they don't kill 45k americans per year (as does the health care industry right now).

    October 9, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  24. Peter (s)

    A man of the people for the people by the people May God Bless the labor of your work!!!

    October 9, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  25. Mark,B'ham,Al.

    If it works for like the US Armed Forces it could be a good helpful thing, if it works like most other goverment agencies it is just another useless Government Bureaucracy.

    October 9, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
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