Leadership of the Financial Services Committee
Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif.
The House Financial Services Committee will have a new chairman regardless of which party wins next year, since current Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, is not running for reelection.
But if the Democrats retake the chamber, the likely successor to chair the committee would be Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., the current ranking member.
A Waters-run committee would be a sea change from Hensarling. The longtime California Democrat is seen as further to the left on some issues than even former Democratic Chairman Barney Frank.
In addition to defending Dodd-Frank and the CFPB, Waters could also use her potential leadership position to push for tougher restrictions on big banks like Wells Fargo. Last month, she introduced a bill to have regulators shut down megabanks that show a pattern of consumer violations. “It’s time to hold these financial institutions accountable and put people over profits,” she said in a press release when the bill was unveiled.
Waters would also likely champion housing issues on the committee. She has long been an advocate for affordable housing measures. Meanwhile, her position on reforming the government-sponsored enterprises is similar to the approach taken by bipartisan GSE proposals in the House. In 2014, she proposed a bill to replace Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with a cooperative-owned securities issuer.