Kraninger: “I appreciate the question, but…”
Everyone Else: “We’d appreciate some answers…”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Banking Committee, CFPB nominee Kathy Kraninger refused at least six times to answer questions about her record in any detail. She offered little information about her career despite being grilled about her lack of experience on consumer protection issues and on her record of mismanagement on high-profile Trump administration policies like immigrant family separation at the Southern border and the disastrous response to the crisis in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria.
Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) may have said it best, when he told Kraninger in frustration, “I am trying to get an answer from you and I just can’t. It is maddening because this is not a trivial aspect of your basic qualifications for the job. You’re coming in and asserting you are a manager, and you can’t characterize anything that you’re doing as a manager.”
The lack of any clear answers from Kraninger about her record is further compounded by the White House’s refusal to respond to requests by several Senators for documents related to her work in the government on these and other issues.
“We deserve a consumer champion at the CFPB, not Kathy Kraninger. The American people want someone they can trust to stand up to powerful Wall Street special interests, not someone who refuses to answer even the most basic questions about their own record,” said Karl Frisch, executive director of Allied Progress.
He continued, “The truth is, Kathy Kraninger has been involved in several high-profile Trump administration policy failures. But even putting aside what we do know about her record of mismanagement, her lack of candor alone should disqualify her from serious consideration for this major promotion.”
KRANINGER REFUSED TO BE CANDID AT LEAST SIX TIMES
- When asked about Hurricane Maria by Sen. Menendez, Kraninger wouldn’t address her role in providing disaster funds as part of the response in Puerto Rico. When asked about the matter, Kraninger responded that she didn’t “‘think it was appropriate to characterize…advice'” she gave to the administration. [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
- When asked by Sen. Warren whether she had a role in implementing Trump’s family separation immigration policy Kraninger refused to answer. Kraninger said she didn’t “‘want to characterize the advice'” she gave to the Administration. [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
- Kraninger was also asked by Sen. Reed if she thought that separating children from their parents deterred border crossings. She once again refused to answer. Kraninger said that she didn’t “‘want to talk about'” the policy and that she didn’t “‘want to characterize the internal conversations.'” [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
- Kraninger also wouldn’t tell Sen. Warren if she participated in any planning on how to reunify children who were taken from their parents calling it a “slippery slope” towards characterizing her advice. Senator Warren attempted to ask Kraninger if she was involved in creating a plan to reunite children who had been separated from their parents. Kraninger said she couldn’t “characterize [her] advice” and said answering would become “a slippery slope in terms of characterizing the advice that was provided.” [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
- When questioned by Sen. Schatz, Kraninger refused to even characterize what categories or types of advice she gave at OMB. Senator Brian Schatz asked Kraninger to explain “what categories” of advice she provided while she was at OMB. In response, Kraninger refused to give a straight answer, instead referring to OMB’s role in the policymaking process broadly, which she said “characterize[ed]” her role. Schatz then asked Kraninger, “Why the third person?” To which Kraninger responded by once again demurring noting that she was “responsible for [her] staff” and “provid[ed] advice to the Director. [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
- Finally, Kraninger would not even tell Sen. Warren whether she thought tearing children away from their parents was immoral. Sen. Elizabeth Warren asked Kathy Kraninger if she thought it was immoral to inflict pain on children as “a tough deterrent” to illegal immigration. Kraninger responded saying there are “many heartbreaking stories that appear in the news,” but ultimately said it wasn’t “appropriate to provide her internal opinion on internal deliberations or discussions on this matter.” [Nomination Hearing, Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, 07/19/18]
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