Faith Leaders and Campaign Reformers Blast Predatory Lender Contributions to Romney Super PAC

Press Release from PICO National Network and Public Campaign Action Fund:

Washington, D.C.— The $162,500 in donations the Mitt Romney-aligned “super PAC” received from predatory lenders is the surest sign that the industry is seeking to influence the election to impact the future of the newly-formed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, according to PICO National Network and Public Campaign Action Fund.

“This is dirty money from an industry that violates family values every day of the year by ensnaring hardworking people in spirals of debt at interest rates that often exceed 400 percent,” said the Rev. Jennifer Thomas, pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Kansas City, Mo., and a clergy leader in the PICO National Network and Missouri Faith Voices.

"These payday lenders are the real vulture capitalists in communities around the country, and now they're investing in a candidate who has pledged to get rid of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said David Donnelly, executive director of Public Campaign Action Fund.

According to a Los Angeles Times analysis, the “Restore Our Future” super PAC received at least $162,500 in donations from payday lenders, including $25,000 from Advance America, $30,000 from Community Choice Financial, and $35,000 from an entity registered to the co-founders of MoneyTree.

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PICO National Network is the largest grassroots, faith-based organizing network in the United States. PICO works with 1,000 religious congregations in more than 200 cities and towns through its 60 local and state federations. PICO and its federations are non-partisan and do not endorse or support candidates for office. PICO urges people of faith to consult their faith traditions for guidance on specific policies and legislation. Learn more at www.piconetwork.org.

Public Campaign Action Fund works to hold politicians who are against comprehensive campaign finance reform accountable for where they get their political donations. Learn more at www.campaignmoney.org.