Democrats Prioritize Politics Over FDIC Worker Protection

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Republicans on Monday said that the Biden administration is putting politics over protecting workers at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as Democrats work to ensure control of the embattled agency.

FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg said he would resign once a successor to the agency is confirmed.

“In light of recent events, I am prepared to step down from my responsibilities once a successor is confirmed,” Gruenberg said in a written statement. “Until that time, I will continue to fulfill my responsibilities as chairman of the FDIC, including the transformation of the FDIC’s workplace culture.”

An independent review of the agency found that it had a “hostile, abusive, and unprofessional” working environment.

The Associated Press (AP) noted:

The incidents span from field offices to headquarters in Washington, and “arose within a workplace culture that is ‘misogynistic,’ ‘patriarchal,’ ‘insular,’ and ‘outdated’ — a ‘good ol’ boys’ club where favoritism is common, wagons are circled around managers, and senior executives with well-known reputations for pursuing romantic relations with subordinates enjoy long careers without any apparent consequence,” the report states.

More than 500 workers reported incidents of harassment, discrimination and other issues.

Republicans were aghast that Gruenberg would only resign once a successor was confirmed, ensuring Democrat control of the agency.

Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), the ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, said in a statement:

If President Biden and Democrats were really serious about supporting employees and fixing the FDIC’s toxic work culture, they’d ask Chairman Gruenberg to step down immediately. This draw-it-out strategy makes it clear that this administration is prioritizing their political agenda over protecting workers.

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) said in an emailed statement:

The FDIC frat party is over, and it’s past time for President Biden to take real action. By failing to fire and immediately remove Chairman Martin Gruenberg, to ensure Democrats keep control of the FDIC’s Board of Directors, the Biden administration is putting politics over protecting women in the workplace. Gruenberg needs to go today, and everyone who perpetuated this culture of misconduct should be investigated and immediately removed from the FDIC, so public servants are focused on serving Americans, not their Animal House behavior.

House Financial Services Committee Chairman Patrick McHenry (R-NC) said in a statement:

“Chair Gruenberg is once again putting Democrats’ politicized regulatory agenda ahead of the wellbeing of the FDIC and the stability of our financial system,” said Chairman McHenry. “While his intent to resign will be welcome news to the FDIC employees who have been subjected to an appalling culture of misconduct and abuse—this announcement is too little, too late. Deep institutional changes at the FDIC are needed now. There is a clear succession plan in place, and the agency’s operations would continue unabated if he rightly stepped down today. This is yet another example of Chair Gruenberg’s refusal to accept responsibility for his actions.

He continued, “I urge Democrats to join me in calling for Chair Gruenberg’s immediate termination.”

Sean Moran is a policy reporter for Truth Voices. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

Sean Moran
Sean Moran
Policy/Congressional Reporter focusing on health care, energy, and tech.

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