How Senator Elizabeth Warren Could Change Your Finances

Alden Wicker

Ready or Not, Here Comes Warren!

It’s clear that Warren is ready to make some big changes in Washington. So what exactly is on her mind? These six things are likely to be on her agenda–and they’re likely to affect your wallet.

1. Reform Bankruptcy Laws, Including Student Loans

Warren made her name in bankruptcy issues. She’s quick to come to the defense of the average individual who declares bankruptcy–her published research shows that half of Americans who seek bankruptcy do so because they can’t afford to pay their medical bills. This includes people who have insurance, so it’s not about being lazy or trying to game the system. (Although her research has been criticized by some conservatives as being shoddy.)

She lobbied unsuccessfully against the “Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005,” which favored the financial industry by making it nearly impossible to clear student loan debt in bankruptcy, among other things. Warren has written before about how these new bankruptcy regulations are particularly damaging to women because they give priority to credit card debt over child support payments. Needless to say, one of her priorities will likely be to dismantle this act.

RELATED: How I Went Bankrupt at 23

2. Protect the CFPB

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)–whose mission it is to ensure that consumer financial products, such as student loans and mortgages, work for Americans–is Warren’s baby. She came up with the idea, and created it. But Republican leaders have been using several tactics to take the teeth out of it, like blocking her appointment to direct the agency. One bill introduced to the House of Representatives takes funding power for the CFPB away from the Federal Reserve and hands it to Congress, which means Congress could completely defund the CFPB and render it useless. Warren wrote a response on Huffington Post that was sharply critical of Wall Street, lobbyists and Congress members. The bill wasn’t expected to make it through the Democrat-controlled Senate, and it definitely won’t now that its protective mama bear is there to defend it.

3. Raise Taxes on the Wealthy

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Warren states on her campaign website that she supports returning to Clinton-era tax rates for the wealthiest Americans. She’s made it clear that she thinks wealthy Americans who have “made it” should give back via taxes.

RELATED: Why the Wealthy Feel Poor

Remember Obama’s infamous “you didn’t build that” speech? That was originally a Warren idea, as this quote from a speech she made on the campaign trail indicates:

“There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody.You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for; you hired workers the rest of us paid to educate; you were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for … Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

It’s safe to say Warren isn’t a believer in trickle-down economics.

  • WA

    Elizabeth Warren is a complete fraud, and your article makes you look completely ignorant.  I live in Massachusetts, and have seen her in “action” – lying on job applications, condescendingly telling people that “you didn’t build that” business.  She’s a hypocrite – making over $350,000 per year while empathizing with the common man.  Find a better example of leadership for your website.

    • Catherine

      Could not have said it better. I will be unsubscribing from this website now that I have read this article. You would have to be a clueless bufoon to think Warren or anyone like her is fiscally responsible. She is a horse at the taxpayer trough and she will help change your finances but it won’t be for your benefit. I can tell this website was started by a young woman who obviously thinks she knows it all to fall for this garbage.

    • Peanutbuttercookies1

      this comment is alarming, not only because of the anger but also the lack of factual information. What kind of lies did she tell on her application? And what is condescending about telling the truth about our infrastructure? Roads are built by tax payers, and often destroyed by large commercial vehicles (especially in smaller port towns where the local budget does not account for the massive repairs to roads damaged by commercial vehicles). We are all a part of the system and anyone who thinks they can opt out is ungrateful and a hypocrite- not Elizabeth Warren.

  • amhp

    I LOVE Elizabeth Warren and I’m so excited about her contributions to our future–thanks for the update!

  • Johanna

    I’m very much in support. Thank you for distilling Warren’s agenda items!

  • Gyoung25

    Elizabeth Warren rocks!  I really hope she and some of the newer Senators will encourage the Senate to change the rules.  This would add to transparency in Washington.  This is badly needed.  If a Senator wants to block a bill, let them explain to the public WHY.  Now they just follow his royal highness, Mitchy the Witchy McConnell and shove it under the rug. 

    Old Mitch sure is a piece of work.  I really loved (sik) when he bragged about not doing his job as a Senator.  He said his main job was to prevent President Obama from being re-elected. 

  • JackieAU5

    Despite what your politics is, I highly recommend Warren’s personal finance book “All Your Worth.” It’s terrific and every LearnVester will benefit. This is where I first learned about the 50/30/20 rule!