Americans for Tax Reform today sent the following letter to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA):


The House Financial Services Committee will soon be considering H.R. 3126, the “Consumer Financial Protection Agency Act of 2009.”  I am strongly urging all Members of Congress to oppose and vote against this misguided legislation.

The biggest problem with H.R. 3126 is the creation of a new, unelected bureaucracy (the Consumer Financial Protection Agency) to paternalistically micromanage credit in America.  This agency would possess sweeping powers to ban or modify any home mortgage, credit card, personal loan or other "consumer financial product" it subjectively deems to be "unfair" or "abusive."

This paternalism will cut off credit to families and small businesses that need it.  It smacks of an arrogant Beltway condescension so common in policy discussions today.  Americans can’t save for their own retirement, so the government will do it for them.  Americans can’t provide for their family’s health insurance, so the government will design a plan and force people to buy it.  Americans can’t be trusted to choose which foods to eat, so the government will tax the unhealthy food.

Put simply, H.R. 3126 is an insult to the intelligence and good common sense of the American people.  Most of the time, people are smart enough to look out for their own economic interests.  If they fail to, they should be expected to live up to their commitments—and will likely learn a valuable lesson or two along the way.

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