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Congressional Record [.PDF]
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
2004 Ron Paul 30:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to cosponsor the legislation offered by Mr. GUTIERREZ using the Congressional Review Act to disapprove the Office of the Comptroller of the Currencys (OCC) preemption regulation because I strongly oppose any attempt to expand the OCCs regulatory functions beyond the power Congress originally granted the OCC. The OCC was never meant to serve as a national consumer protection agency. Its limited, intended role has been underscored by Federal court rulings that State law remains applicable to national banks in the absence of explicit Federal preemption.
2004 Ron Paul 30:2
Expanding the jurisdiction of OCC necessarily infringes on the ability of State lawmakers to determine their own consumer protection standards. One-size-fits-all policies crafted in Washington cannot serve the 50 diverse States well. Different States and markets have different needs that are better understood by State and local legislators. Congressional conservatives, in particular, should not endorse an expansion of the Federal regulatory power at the expense of States rights. The Tenth Amendment is clear: regulatory powers not specifically granted to Congress remain with the States. Congress should stop usurping State authority and leave consumer protection laws to those with far more experience and expertise.
2004 Ron Paul 30:3
This new OCC authority will have far-reaching and unintended consequences. State law governing mortgage brokers, sub-prime lenders, check cashing centers, leasing companies, and even car dealers could be preempted under the new proposal. This proposal may also give national banks and their subsidiaries a competitive advantage over small mortgage companies. OCC undoubtedly will need to hire new staff. Yet the OCC still may be unable to handle the flood of new responsibilities. Unless Congress resists any expansion of OCC, it risks creating another huge, unaccountable, bureaucratic agency. Therefore, I respectfully urge all my colleagues to support Mr. Gutierriezs legislation disapproving the OCCs preemption regulation.