Categories: News

CFPB Revamps Structure, Debuts ‘Celebrity Director’ At Trump’s Urging

In an effort to make everyone happy, the CFPB has taken a page from the Donald Trump show business canon.

“In effect, we are going to have a rotating cast of celebrity apprentices,” explained current-but-soon to be former Director Richard Cordray, at a press conference called hastily on April 1. “We came up with the idea for this when we had a meeting with President Trump and some of his producers — I mean, staffers. The best way out of a constitutional showdown is a bit of the ol’ razzle-dazzle.”

Cordray was referring, of course, to the events of March, where in court documents the Justice Department filed it was argued that the president had leeway to boot Cordray at will. Previously and under the structure of the Dodd-Frank Act, the directorship had been one that could be removed only for cause. The constitutional battle had been raging since the waning months of 2016, where the U.S. Court for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled in favor of PHH, a mortgage lender, against the CFPB, in a touchstone that brought the battle over structure to a conflagration. The agency had been on tenterhooks about the legal case reaching the Supreme Court.

The celebrity apprentices? Two have been announced, to share duties on a rotating basis, one week on, one off. President Trump appeared with Cordray to announce that along with the “at will,” the first two celebrity appointees would be Omarosa Manigault and Arnold Schwarzenegger, both former stalwarts of The Apprentice.

The pair appeared by Trump’s side, along with Cordray, linking arms, albeit a bit uneasily, to announce the new directorship roles.

“When it comes to personnel,” said Trump, and then “this time it’s personal,” finished Schwarzenegger, lighting up a trademark cigar. “Hasta la vista, consumer complaints.”

Trump explained that the nation would benefit from televised, reality show atmospherics surrounding the day-to-day workings of the agency. He stated that the CFPB represented “a morose place, with people having to listen to complaints and bellyaching all day — that just leads to the levying of massive fines in an effort to cheer themselves up. I mean, mortgage documents and auto lending and calls about credit collection … not only is it boring, it makes people yawn. Believe me. The workers here, they see Omarosa, they see Arnold, they’re going to get excited to hustle those complaints right out the door. And it’s not just about credit ratings, but also about TV ratings. Those workers, they’ll see themselves on TV, and they will get fired up. It’s going to be unbelievable.”

“Oh, and speaking of ‘fired up,’ that reminds me,” the president said, turning to Cordray. “You’re fired.”

This story was written as part of PYMNTS Annual April Fool’s edition and all in the spirit of good fun. Any resemblance to real news is purely coincidental. We hope you enjoyed it.

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New PYMNTS Report: Preventing Financial Crimes Playbook – July 2020

Call it the great tug-of-war. Fraudsters are teaming up to form elaborate rings that work in sync to launch account takeovers. Chris Tremont, EVP at Radius Bank, tells PYMNTS that financial institutions (FIs) can beat such highly organized fraudsters at their own game. In the July 2020 Preventing Financial Crimes Playbook, Tremont lays out how.

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