Financial Services

Democrats pan, Republicans applaud Kraninger's tenure at CFPB
Director mum on agency's need to exist

Kraninger was unwilling to say her agency needs to exist. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

At a hearing Thursday, Democrats castigated Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathleen Kraninger, who wasn't willing to say that her agency needs to exist. 

Could Trump’s acquittal spell the end of White Houses honoring congressional subpoenas?
Some Senate Democrats are concerned it could set a new precedent

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and the other Supreme Court justices may ultimately have to decide about the validity of congressional subpoenas. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Congress may have issued its last successful subpoenas to a president of the opposite party, some senators worry, now that President Donald Trump is acquitted of the House’s obstruction of Congress charge.

The argument is that the 47-53 vote Wednesday to reject the second article of impeachment lessened the legislative branch’s power to oversee the executive branch and complicates ongoing litigation on the power of a congressional subpoena. 

DOJ: Congress must meet high bar for Trump tax information
Cases set for March 31 oral argument

The Supreme Court building at sunset on Nov. 14, 2019. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Justice Department on Monday night backed President Donald Trump in the Supreme Court fight over congressional subpoenas for his financial documents, telling the justices that lawmakers must meet a higher bar when seeking a sitting president’s personal records.

The cases, set for March 31 oral argument, center on subpoenas from three House committees to accounting firm Mazars USA, Deutsche Bank and Capital One Financial Corp. House Democrats are seeking eight years of Trump’s financial and tax records.

Wall Street czar Linda Lacewell takes on regulation
Fintech Beat, Ep. 38

Linda Lacewell, superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

When it comes to regulating Wall Street, perhaps no one person is more important than Linda Lacewell, the superintendent of New York’s Department of Financial Services. On her one year anniversary in office, she talks with Fintech Beat about changes to the BitLicense, the Apple Pay card and her 2020 priorities.

House panel asks whether legislation can keep cash as king
Electronic payments taking greater market share

Rep. Donald Payne, D-Md., is backing legislation to ban cashless stores. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

At some uncertain point in the future, printing cash may be a waste of money. As Americans increasingly rely on credit cards, online transfers, mobile apps and cryptocurrencies to complete transactions, a House panel debated Thursday the promise and potential pitfalls of a cashless society.  

In recent years, some stores have decided they’d rather not ask “paper or plastic?” to customers at checkout. Instead, they’ve gone cash free, accepting only smartphone apps like Apple Pay, mobile payments like Venmo, or debit and credit cards.

Print or online? New GPO director Hugh Halpern is a publishing ‘agnostic’
After decades as a Hill staffer, he’s presiding over information in the digital age — but he can still geek out over print

Government Publishing Office Director Hugh Halpern looks over copies of the Congressional Record as he gives a tour of the GPO on Jan. 22. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

After three decades of trying to blend into the woodwork, Hugh Halpern comes to the office and sees his own face on the wall. His picture is hanging in the lobby.

The new director of the Government Publishing Office spent 30 years as a congressional aide, and pushing down his “staffer instincts” has so far been one of the hardest parts of the job.

House of accommodations: Impeachment managers find ways to vote
Life goes on across Rotunda for prosecutors in Senate trial

House impeachment managers, from left, Sylvia R. Garcia, Val B. Demings, Jason Crow and Hakeem Jeffries are seen in the Capitol on Friday before the continuation of the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Sylvia R. Garcia has never missed a vote — not in her first term so far in the House and not in the six years she served in the Texas state Senate.

The freshman Democrat’s perfect attendance could’ve been in jeopardy this week since she is one of the seven House impeachment managers prosecuting the chamber’s case in the Senate trial of President Donald Trump. But fortunately for Garcia, House Democratic leaders are keeping the floor schedule flexible to ensure the managers can participate in votes.

Impeachment managers all represent safe Democratic seats
GOP faces steep challenge to oust prosecutors of Trump

Speaker Nancy Pelosi at a Wednesday news conference to announce the House impeachment managers: from left, Reps. Hakeem Jeffries, Sylvia R. Garcia, Jerrold Nadler, Adam B. Schiff, Val B. Demings, Zoe Lofgren and Jason Crow. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call photo)

Updated Jan. 16 10:45 a.m. | Speaker Nancy Pelosi went with Democrats from politically safe districts to prosecute the impeachment case against President Donald Trump in the Senate.

All seven impeachment managers named Wednesday are in races that Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates Solid Democratic. Many of their Republican challengers haven’t even raised any money yet. That could change given these Democrats’ new, high-profile role, but the fundamentals of their races would have to shift significantly to make a difference in the outcome.

Impeachment news roundup: Jan. 14
House committees release trove of new documents produced by Lev Parnas

Speaker Nancy Pelosi departs from Tuesday’s Democratic Caucus meeting with House Intelligence Chairman Adam B. Schiff. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

House committees investigating President Donald Trump as part of the impeachment process released a trove of documents Tuesday night including phone records, documents and materials produced by Lev Parnas, an associate of President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani.

The evidence the committees released showed Parnas was a key figure, as other witnesses testified, in working with Giuliani to try to get Ukraine to open the investigations Trump wanted.

Crypto enthusiasts say new products lend bitcoin credibility
Futures considered crucial to gain buy-in from financial industry

The big development at the end of 2019 was the first trading of what’s known as physically settled bitcoin futures, following approval from state and federal regulators. Those bitcoin futures trade through regulated exchanges and clearinghouses. (Avishek Das/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images photo illustration)

The cryptocurrency industry is hailing the emergence of complex bitcoin investment products as a needed step to attract new investors while lending credibility to the digital asset and building a pathway to regulatory clarity.

The big development at the end of 2019 was the first trading of what’s known as physically settled bitcoin futures, following approval from state and federal regulators. And while the launch of these investment products hasn’t convinced everyone that they will lead to buy-in from a skeptical financial industry, those leading the charge say it’s a crucial step.