Emboldened by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the American Bankers Association, the Koch brothers and their tea party "patriots," Republicans in Congress last year tried every tactic they could muster to undercut the CFPB, including attempts to dilute its leadership, proposals to shackle the agency to the congressional appropriations process, and radically increasing oversight by other regulators who were less sensitive to consumer issues. We can expect Sen. Warren to fight back forcefully against such anti-consumer (and anti-legitimate business) flim-flammery.
Be careful what you wish for, fellas. Republicans sought and succeeded in having Warren passed over as head of the CFPB, but now they have to live with her.
Warren's victory is both historic -- she will be the first woman to represent the state of Massachusetts in the U.S. Senate -- and gratifying -- she delivered a shocking eight-point slapdown to her "handsome" opponent and his Wall Street backers.
Her victory will come to be seen as a victory for consumers. If her public career is anything like her life up until now, she'll be an articulate, passionate voice in the Senate. She will make it her mission to fight ferociously against all those who would rig the system against the middle class and enrich themselves at the expense of U.S. families. It should be a wake-up call to anyone who thinks they can put profit or party politics above the good of our nation and the interests of U.S. consumers.
Not every American shares my enthusiasm for the outcome of Election 2012. The American Banker, for one, said of the Warren campaign:
"The financial services industry has been watching her race closely, fearful that Warren may continue her harsh attacks on banks as a member of Congress and press for stricter regulations."
A whole lot of bankers from across America poured a whole lot of money into her opponent's campaign, according to the Los Angeles Times. They weren't just watching, either.
Apparently, the harsh prospect of being held accountable to U.S. consumers was highly motivating; much more so than the harshness of the foreclosures and bankruptcies endured by U.S. homeowners, for instance, to which the mega-banks somehow managed to remain sublimely indifferent.