This afternoon – without press access and behind closed doors – Donald Trump will sign legislation dismantling the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s rule against forced arbitration – a practice used by Wall Street banks, credit card companies, and predatory lenders to deny Americans their full legal rights when they are victims of fraud on the part of those companies.
American Bridge spokesperson Andrew Bates responded to Trump’s signing of the bill with the following statement:
“Donald Trump is selling-out middle class families, working Americans, and veterans by signing this dangerous legislation – a key Wall Street lobbying priority – which lets banks and credit card companies evade legal accountability after defrauding their customers. And he’s doing it behind closed doors, hoping that no one will notice. Giving large, financial sector companies the ability to deprive American consumers of fundamental legal rights using fine print is the exact opposite of ‘draining the swamp’ – and it’s just the latest example of Trump proving his entire campaign last year was based on lies.
When the Senate passed this bill last month, the Wall Street Journal wrote that the “vote handed the financial industry its most significant legislative victory since President Donald Trump took office.”
Unsurprisingly, the vote was welcomed by the Financial Services Roundtable, the American Bankers Association, and other powerful organizations who lobby for Wall Street interests. At the same time, undoing this protection for working Americans and middle class families was fought by veterans advocates – including the American Legion, which has urged Trump to veto it – as well as consumer watchdogs.
During congressional testimony regarding the Wells Fargo scandal that defrauded 3.5 million Americans, Wells Fargo CEO Tim Sloan defended his company’s use of forced arbitration and said that they would continue to use it.
Earlier this year, Trump held public signing ceremonies with numerous guests to trumpet the signing of bills that, like today’s, were passed using the Congressional Review Act.