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Trump’s Nominee to Head Consumer Watchdog Grilled in Senate Hearing

HeadlineJul 20, 2018

On Capitol Hill, Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee grilled Kathy Kraninger, President Trump’s nominee to head the beleaguered Consumer Financial Protection Bureau—an agency opposed by Republicans which has seen its operations severely curtailed under the Trump administration. This is North Dakota Democrat Heidi Heitkamp questioning Kraninger.

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp: “Have you ever worked at a bank or a credit union?”

Kathy Kraninger: “Senator, I have not.”

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp: “OK.”

Kathy Kraninger: “And like many other”—

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp: “Have you ever had oversight or regulated a bank or a credit union?”

Kathy Kraninger: “No, Senator, I have not, like many other nominees.”

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp: “OK. Have you ever been responsible for oversight or leadership in supervising payday lenders?”

Kathy Kraninger: “No, Senator, I have not.”

Kraninger is a senior official at the White House Office of Management and Budget who’s proposed cutting nearly $150 million—or about a quarter—from the CFPB’s budget. She assisted the Trump administration’s bungled response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and helped craft the “zero tolerance” policy at the U.S.-Mexico border that’s seen thousands of immigrant children separated from their parents. This is Massachusetts Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren: “You see the videos of some of these children being returned to their parents after long separations. They’re dazed. They’re unsmiling. They’re dirty. It’s like the life has been sucked out of them. These are innocent children who may be scarred forever by this policy. It is fundamentally immoral, and you—you—were part of it, Ms. Kraninger. It is a moral stain that will follow you for the rest of your life.”

Senator Warren’s comments came as federal officials reported Thursday that just 364 of some 2,500 families with children aged 5 and older have been brought back together, less than a week before a court-ordered deadline to reunite children and parents. We’ll have more on the emotional and psychological impact of the Trump administration’s immigration policies later in the broadcast.

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