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Rep. Darrel Issa, R-CA and Chairman of the House Government Oversight and Reform Committee

updated 07/22/14 11:53 AM
'Misrepresents Facts,' Dykstra Says
Some within the credit union industry may have read the recently published Credit Union Times article regarding remarks from Rep. Darrell Issa, R-CA, in relation to the credit union movement.

Issa—who is chairman of the House Government Oversight and Reform Committee—recently participated in discussions on the Department of Justice’s “Operation Choke Point,” which impacted a few credit unions.

In a recent message to credit union CEOs, California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues President and CEO Diana Dykstra states that the CU Times story misrepresents Issa’s position on credit unions in general by accusing him of “wearing banker stripes.”

“As your trade association, we actively engage and communicate with the chairman, and we find this statement to be completely false and a misrepresentation of the facts,” Dykstra stated in her message.

In the “Operation Choke Point” discussion, Issa answers a question about the impact this operation has on credit unions and how the government, including Congress, has forced changes in the credit union movement. He demonstrates in-depth knowledge and expertise of credit union issues and acknowledges that if Congress does not act upon positive changes for credit unions, this path will only continue.

The exchange can be viewed on the CATO Institute’s website, beginning at approximately 16:07, by clicking here.

The California League reached out to Issa, who in turn provided the following statement:

Credit unions are vital lending sources for our communities' small and growing business owners. In the aftermath of the 2008 financial downturn, they have remained a steady lending option.
Unfortunately, smaller financial institutions are being driven out of business by government regulations imposed by Dodd-Frank, the risk-based capital rule and the Department of Justice's Operation Choke Point. In Operation Choke Point the financial institutions, including some credit unions, are being pressured by the federal government to terminate business with legal industries that they find objectionable.
My Committee, the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has shed light on Operation Choke Point and other overzealous regulatory efforts so that the overreach of the federal government can be reined in.

The League also recognizes that the chairman has supported and continues to support credit unions by:

  • Co-sponsoring the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act in the 2007 and 2009 sessions of Congress.
  • Co-sponsoring multiple versions of legislation to raise the member business lending cap.
  • Signing the King-Meeks letter to the National Credit Union Administration, voicing concerns on the agency’s risk-based capital proposal.
  • Utilizing his position on the Government Oversight and Reform Committee to question regulators on behalf of credit unions.

“Lastly, and almost just as important, the chairman maintains an open and honest dialogue with credit unions local to his district,” Dykstra noted. “We hope this clarifies the matter. We thank you for your continued engagement with our congressional delegation.”

If credit unions have any questions on this or any other matter related to congressional affairs, they can contact Leagues Vice President of Federal Government Affairs Jeremy Empol at jeremye@ccul.org.

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