Mulvaney: CFPB Can’t Combat Lending Discrimination If It Has Internal Issues of Its Own

VIDEO: During 2015 Congressional Hearing, Mulvaney Questioned How the CFPB Could Combat Discriminatory Lending Practices While Facing Internal Discrimination Issues

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, consumer advocacy organization Allied Progress released video footage of CFPB Acting Director Mick Mulvaney questioning how the Bureau could hope to combat discriminatory lending practices while facing intern discrimination issues of its own.

The comment was made during a 2015 congressional hearing. They take on new meaning given the current state of affairs at the Mulvaney’s CFPB where his handpicked fair lending division chief Eric Blankenstein has been exposed for writing racist, sexist, and politically toxic blog posts.

“It’s time for 2018 Mulvaney to meet 2015 Mulvaney and fire Eric Blankenstein without further delay. He can send a powerful message by standing with consumers and CFPB employees rather than the author of racist and sexist blog posts,” said Karl Frisch, executive director of Allied Progress.

He continued, “The fact that Mulvaney has yet to act, speaks volumes about the motivation behind his efforts to weaken the CFPB’s ability to protect consumers from discriminatory lending practices and hold bad financial actors accountable.”

According to a report in the Washington Post last week and subsequent research unearthed by Allied Progress, Eric Blankenstein wrote that calling someone “n—-r” (he actually used the word) didn’t make them a racist, asked “does it matter that someone got beat up because they were black,” claimed that hate crime “hoaxes” are “three times as prevalent as actual hate crimes,” blamed a woman’s right to choose as the reason a pregnant woman was murdered, and lamented that women can “‘f— someone [they] shouldn’t have’” and use abortion to “‘get rid of the problem’” but men can’t. He also likened stem cell research to the Holocaust.

Yesterday American Banker reported the CFPB employee union has called on Mulvaney to take “swift and decisive action” against Blankenstein over his racist and sexist writing, which they say shows “he is unfit for any leadership position in the federal government.” Pressure continues to mount on Mulvaney to fire Blankenstein despite a weak non-apology from him on Monday. This follows news of a “rebellion” and deep “dissent” within the CFPB over the issue. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Sherrod Brown have called for Blankenstein’s ouster, with Brown taking to the Senate floor and calling on Mulvaney to act.


In 2015, Mick Mulvaney Seemed Skeptical That The CFPB Could Eliminate Discriminatory Lending From The Marketplace If The Bureau Itself Had Issues With Employee Discrimination. 

  • Mulvaney Asks, “If The CFPB Is Supposed To Be Involved” In Fixing Discriminatory Lending, “How Can They Fix It When They Have The Same Problems Themselves?” During a 2015 Hearing of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, Mick Mulvaney said, “I was particularly moved by Mr. Green’s introduction regarding the false Picassos. I spent a lot of time in a last couple of days in my state dealing with race relations. And as proud as I am of the way that we’ve been handling ourselves the last week, the stories that Mr. Green told about the discrimination that minorities face at some banks is a problem, is real, and it’s something we should be doing something about. Here’s my question: If the CFPB is supposed to be involved in fixing that, how can they fix it when they have the same problems themselves?” [“Hearing: ‘Examining Continuing Allegations of Discrimination and Retaliation at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (01:18:38),’” Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations (House Committee on Financial Services), 06/25/15]

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