News & Politics

'Non-Partisan' Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Donated Exclusively to Democrats in 2016

According to campaign finance reports, taxpayer-subsidized  employees at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a non-partisan government agency, donated exclusively to Democrats in the 2016 election cycle.

Employees at the CFPB, which was created by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, contributed nearly $50,000 during the 2016 campaign with all of that money going to aid Hillary Clinton or her rival, the insurgent socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., VT). Agency employees made more than 300 donations during the campaign. Not one went to a Republican candidate.

Rep. Sean Duffy (R., Wis.), a frequent critic of the agency, said that it is no surprise that the agency would contribute to the Democratic campaign. Republicans have tried to reduce the scope of the bureau’s broad regulatory power since Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.), one of the most liberal lawmakers in the country, oversaw its creation.

“CFPB employees fell over each other to give money to Hillary because she supported CFPB’s desire to remain in the shadows and unaccountable to the American people,” Duffy said. “No one is shocked that Washington bureaucrats would donate to the candidate who promised to maintain and expand onerous Dodd-Frank regulations that crush our community banks and local credit unions.”

It’s not just the CFPB that donated exclusively to Democrats, three other agencies did as well. Other groups who donated in a partisan manner include the Peace Corp and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

Employees at the National Transportation Safety Board, which investigates commuter and flight crashes, also gave 100 percent of their $3,000 in donations to Clinton and Sanders. An agency spokesman told the Washington Free Beacon that donations do not interfere with a worker’s ability to perform his job on behalf of the taxpayers, nor did any donations violate the Hatch Act, which bars partisan activity on government time.

The Environmental Protection Agency also has a history of donating in a lopsided way. For the 2012 and 2014 election cycles, employees at the EPA donated more than $250K to Democrats, 90% of all political donations.

Data compiled by OpenSecrets.org shows that in the 2012 and 2014 election cycles, contributors who listed EPA as their employer gave 90 percent, or $331,174, of their total federal campaign donations to Democrats, and just nine percent, or $32,891, to Republicans.

Is it a problem when employees of government agencies don’t reflect the electoral landscape at large?