Washington D.C. – Consumer watchdog group Allied Progress launched the latest ad in its campaign urging CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger to fix the administration’s proposed overhaul of debt collection rules so that it puts consumers ahead of industry wishes to harass working families. The ad, ‘Follow the Money’, running this week on Facebook and YouTube, features findings from Allied Progress’ new analysis showing the debt collection industry trade groups have spent over $2.1 million on federal lobbying since Trump took office, and debt collectors have donated over $343,000 to Republican political campaigns since 2016.
The effort comes less than a month before the public comment period closes on the CFPB’s proposal to give debt collectors more options to harass and invade the privacy of consumers, including unlimited texts and emails without first seeking permission. The Trump spam plan rewards the debt collection industry with “almost everything” on their wish list despite racking up among the highest numberof consumer abuse complaints and millions of dollarsin fines and legal penalties for misconduct. The ad also comes the same week Kraninger’s top aide overseeing the debt collection rule-making effort, Tom Pahl, is speaking at an “intimate gathering”of debt industry executives in Sedona, AZ, raising serious questions about the bureau’s impartiality in this process.
“If you ever wonder why harmful industries like big polluters, predatory lenders or debt collectors keep finding their way to the top of the Trump administration’s priority list, the answer is always ‘follow the money’”, said Jeremy Funk, spokesman for Allied Progress. “The debt industry has taken good care of a lot of Trump’s enablers in Congress, and it’s payback time. The price this time is consumer privacy.”