Kraninger Weighs in on Rulemaking Process During CFPB Nomination Hearing

Kathleen Kraninger, nominee for director of the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection

The nominee for the newly named Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection has been criticized for her lack of experience in the financial services sector, but today’s Senate hearing provided a slight glimpse into her views on rulemaking and how she would apply it to the auto finance space.

Kathleen Kraninger, an associate director for general government programs at the Office of Management and Budget, appeared before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs to field questions about her readiness to lead the bureau.

Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) used his time to ask Kraninger about former director Richard Cordray’s use of guidance to affect change in the auto finance industry.

“Under the previous regime the CFPB engaged in imposing policies that had the effect of being a rule without going through the Administrative Procedures Act,” Toomey said during the hearing. “The indirect auto lending case was such a case where the guidance was the mechanism they used to impose what should have gone through the rulemaking process, never did, Congress recognized that and had such repealed it. Will you commit to using the administrative procedures act when enacting new rules?”

Kraninger responded, “Yes, it’s critical for the process.”

Kraninger gave minimal color to her answers and often refused to give her opinion on pressing issues facing the bureau, yet she did give yes or no responses to various topics.

Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) asked if she supported the “stronger” military lending act rules that were enacted by the Department of Defense earlier this year and she responded in the affirmative.

Additionally, Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) asked if Kraninger would reinstate the office of fair lending under the stronger structures that Cordray enforced.

“It’s unfortunate as discrimination should have to place in society let alone the markets, but it does exist,” Kraninger said. “Enforcing fair lending laws is a critical responsibility, but whether it happens in the division of supervision or whether it happens in a reconstituted fair lending office is something I can commit to you that I’ll look at it freshly.”

The hearing was still ongoing at press time, and Auto Finance News will be following Kraninger’s appointment as it progresses.  

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As Assistant Editor at Auto Finance News, William specializing in compliance, operations, and subprime. As a Brooklyn implant by way of Ohio, he's happy to discuss the triumphs and pitfalls of Cleveland sports as well as the latest music trends. Former bylines include Candy & Snack Today, Inverse, and The Tennessean.

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