October 24, 2017

Brown Opening Statement at Banking Committee Hearing On Nominations to The SEC and The U.S. Mint

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) – ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – released the following opening statement at today’s full committee hearing on the nominations to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Mint.

Brown’s remarks, as prepared for delivery, follow.

Thank you, Chairman Crapo, for holding today's nomination hearing. 

Welcome to today’s nominees.  Congratulations to the three of you.  Mr. David J. Ryder has been nominated to be the Director of the U.S. Mint, and Ms. Hester Peirce and Mr. Robert Jackson, Jr., have been nominated to be Members of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mr. Ryder has previously served as Director of the Mint in the Administration of George H.W. Bush.  Since that time, he has continued to work in the world of currency design and security in the private sector, most recently at Honeywell.  His public service and corporate experience have prepared him to lead the Mint in a time of evolving currency design and technology.

If confirmed, Ms. Peirce would return to the SEC as a Commissioner and further her public service.  Her time at the SEC and working on Senator Shelby’s Banking Committee staff provide her with a broad understanding of the agency’s regulatory and legislative issues at a time when technology is transforming the way financial markets work.

Mr. Jackson’s academic and private sector background will help him weigh the theoretical and practical sides of SEC policies.  His scholarship on executive compensation and corporate governance will be useful as the SEC works to finish the executive compensation rules required under the Wall Street Reform Act.

The nominees to serve on the SEC will finally bring the Commission to full strength at a critical time.  The SEC has joined corporate America as a cyberattack victim.  Not only must the SEC protect the data it collects, it must make sure the public companies that are the engine of our economy are upfront with investors and their customers about cyber risks and breaches.

I want to emphasize that the SEC’s investor protection mission is the cornerstone of a well-functioning stock market.  The SEC must work tirelessly to ensure integrity and fairness in the capital markets, so that investors can believe in the markets and in the regulator. 

The failure to hold any senior executives responsible for the massive misconduct during the financial crisis stands out as a failure in enforcement and not just at the SEC.  Ms. Peirce and Mr. Jackson, this is something that should bother you as well, and if you are confirmed, I expect you to do everything you can to promote a strong enforcement program.  

Thank you Mr. Chairman.