Inside Politics

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The House greeted the official opening Thursday of the new agency to protect consumers from financial abuse by voting to change its structure and reach.

Republican sponsors said they were trying to make the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau more transparent and accountable. Democrats said Republicans wanted to cripple the agency before it gets on its feet.

The 241-173 vote, mainly along party lines, sends the legislation to the Democratic-led Senate, which is not expected to support it. The White House has issued a veto threat.

The legislation would replace the director of the new agency with a five-person commission and make it easier for federal regulators to override regulations created by the agency.


Paul is criticized Libertarian bent

The Club for Growth, the influential fiscal conservative group, warned Thursday Rep. Ron Paul’s unwavering libertarian views stops him from seeing that sometimes the perfect is the enemy of the good. “Ron Paul is ideologically committed to pro-growth, limited government policies,” Chris Chocola, the club’s president, said in its latest rundown of the GOP presidential field. “However, his single-minded focus on achieving a utopian libertarian society based on the U.S. Constitution has often caused him to oppose even good pieces of legislation like pro-growth free-trade agreements.”

In their breakdown of Mr. Paul’s record, the influential anti-tax group applauds his consistent record on opposing tax and spending increases, while noting a few exceptions, including his support of so-called “pork” projects. On free trade, the report knocks Mr. Paul, saying he embraces “the importance of free trade, but lives in a dream world if he thinks free trade will be realized absent agreements like NAFTA and CAFTA” — the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Central America Free Trade Agreement.

Mr. Paul’s strict ideology also hurts him when it comes to entitlement reform, the group says. “Just as in trade, this tendency leaves Paul opposing pro-growth reforms of Social Security,” the group says.


Group sues over Title IX enforcement

A group of coaches, parents and others is suing the Education Department over how it determines whether high schools are complying with the federal law that bans sex discrimination in schools.

The 1972 law, Title IX, has helped open more academic and sports opportunities for women.

At issue is one way the government determines whether a school is complying: Whether the number of male and female athletes at a school is in proportion to enrollment.

The American Sports Council says that way of checking compliance will lead to quotas and the elimination of boys’ sports teams. The group wants a court order to stop the department from using the test.

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