Free Minds & Free Markets

Elizabeth Warren’s Unaccountable Federal Agency Backfires on Her: New at Reason

A lesson in not letting political power get in the way of proper oversight

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenBill Clark/CQ Roll Call/NewscomSen. Elizabeth Warren is spitting mad at Mick Mulvaney, the Office of Management and Budget director who does double duty heading up an agency whose creation Warren championed: the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The CFPB's previous director was an ideological ally of Warren. Since Mulvaney took over Warren has ripped the agency's decisions. Warren said Mulvaney is giving "the middle finger" to consumers, and she railed at Mulvaney's indifferent response to the 10 (!) letters she has sent him demanding answers to more than 100 questions.

The other day she tweeted that she is giving Mulvaney "one last chance." Yet as The Wall Street Journal points out, she has only herself to blame for her apparent impotence.

Time and again during debate over the CFPB, conservatives and libertarians warned that its powers were too great and that its accountability to the other branches of government was too limited. But that was just the way Warren and other supporters wanted things. Neither Congress nor other political forces could influence an unaccountable regulatory agency. Now Warren finds herself thwarted by the very lack of oversight she championed. A. Barton Hinkle explains more.

Photo Credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/Newscom


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