Banking groups unite against Biden’s choice for key regulatory post


“The heart of it all and the source of our most important concerns is that as we look at whatever she has said or written publicly, there are some bold ideas that are basically aimed at wiping out the banking system as we know it today. ‘hui,’ said Rebeca Romero. Rainey, the chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of America, in an interview Tuesday.

A White House spokeswoman and Ms. Omarova declined to comment.

Although most of the institutions represented by the Independent Community Bankers of America are not overseen by Ms. Omarova, they are crucial to her chances of confirmation. The threat of her disapproval may be enough to convince moderate Democrats not to vote for her, and even a single defection could scuttle her due to the 50-50 split between Democrats and Republicans in the Senate.

The American Bankers Association and another industry group, the Consumer Bankers Association, have contacted Senators Mark Warner of Virginia and Jon Tester of Montana, two moderate Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee, according to a person familiar with the matter who was not. not allowed to speak. publicly.

The Independent Community Bankers of America also reached out to Democrats least likely to support her if her nomination reaches a Senate-wide vote, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, the person said.

Asked about contacts with the two senators, Ms Romero Rainey said her group expressed concerns about Ms Omarova – although she acknowledged that Ms Omarova had worked alongside community banks on some issues.

Ms Omarova, for example, filed a brief in support of a lawsuit brought by the New York State banking regulator over the OCC’s creation of a new charter for FinTech companies. nonbanks, known as fintechs, which smaller banks fear will take them out of business. of them while avoiding the strict rules they must follow. She also wrote about the need for more restrictions on industrial loan companies, another type of lender that community bankers see as a threat. And she has publicly warned of the risks of big banks and other big financial institutions becoming too powerful.

But none of this seems to matter compared to Ms Omarova’s support for bank accounts issued by the Federal Reserve.

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