Bloomberg: Warren Winning Means No Sale If You Can’t Explain It

Bloomberg wants Americans to know that Elizabeth Warren is an everyday-woman fighting a not-so-everyday battle to empower consumers. Click here to read the full article.

Nov. 19 (Bloomberg) — In Elizabeth Warren’s world, credit card contracts would be so simple a teenager could read and understand them in four minutes. Loans would be as easy to compare as toasters, and online credit scores would be free.

“We need a new model: If you can’t explain it, you can’t sell it,” said Warren, 60, a Harvard University law professor who is head of the Congressional Oversight Panel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, in an interview.

The 1966 high school debate champion of Oklahoma may get what she wants. The House of Representatives will vote in December on her idea. She suggested a Financial Product Safety Commission in a 2007 article in the magazine Democracy. President Barack Obama proposed it to Congress in June as the Consumer Financial Protection Agency.

Warren won’t discuss whether she may be a candidate to lead the authority, which would have the power to regulate $13.7 trillion of debt products. A Warren nomination would tell banks that Obama is determined to force reduced checking-account fees and limit lender claims in mortgage advertising, among other measures the industry opposes, said Thomas Cooley, dean of New York University’s Stern School of Business.

“She is an ideological crusader,” Cooley said in an interview. “She is a person who will stir up a lot of trouble.” In a column in Forbes magazine, Cooley accused her of “waging a self-righteous holy war.”

The criticism doesn’t bother her, Warren said. She learned to shake things off growing up in Norman, Oklahoma, with three older brothers “in a family of car parts and fist fights,” she said. “It was get tough or die, and I decided to get tough.”