“Debt Trap Debbie” Campaign Expands, Lights Up South Florida
Broward County, FL – The campaign to hold Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz accountable for standing with predatory payday lenders is escalating in the Congresswoman’s own back yard. The latest round of advertising features two illuminated billboards on high traffic routes in Florida’s 23rd District informing local residents that “Debt Trap Debbie” is siding with payday lenders rather than President Obama.
“President Obama has shown he’s on the side of hardworking Americans by encouraging the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to hold payday lenders accountable,” said Allied Progress executive director Karl Frisch. “In a stunning contrast, Rep. Wasserman Schultz has accepted tens-of-thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from these predators – often within weeks of taking official actions to benefit the industry – and is now working with radical conservatives to help gut the CFPB’s efforts to stop the worst abuses of these payday lenders.”
The billboards, one on the Florida turnpike and the other on I-75, are expected to amass nearly 3.3 million impressions over the next month. The artwork on the billboards depicts the high-profile Congresswoman standing on the side of payday lenders, and not with President Obama, whose administration supports reining in the abusive lending practices of the industry through the CFPB.
The “Debt Trap Debbie” campaign has previously launched a television ad in her home state and an online petition at DebtTrapDebbie.com calling on Wasserman Schultz to “stop sabotaging President Obama’s hard work to hold payday lenders accountable.” Wasserman Schultz has received over $68,000 in contributions from the industry while in Congress and is a co-sponsor of a bill that would delay protections for borrowers while paving the way for payday lenders to continue preying on vulnerable Americans. It has been reported that she is also recruiting fellow lawmakers to support the legislation, which undermines President Obama’s agenda.
Allied Progress will continue to shine a spotlight on the cozy relationships of elected officials and payday lenders. In the weeks and months ahead, it will expand its campaign to target other Members of Congress who ignore the needs of hardworking Americans trapped in a cycle of debt and oppose commonsense efforts to reform the predatory payday lending industry.
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