At a Senate hearing for Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf on Tuesday, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) tore into the CEO as “gutless” for the way he handled his company’s recent account creation scandal.
Wells Fargo has been in hot water since evidence surfaced of a scam that effected a huge amount of their customer base. Employees created millions of fake accounts, tacking extra fees onto existing customers, in order to meet sales goals. In turn, this massively increased the stock value worth of Wells Fargo, making it the world’s most valuable bank. Thousands of low-level employees have been fired, but Warren feels that blame is misplaced.
Warren viciously attacked Strumpf at the Senate meeting for not holding himself accountable, even though he claims he should be:
“What have you actually done to hold yourself accountable?… You haven’t resigned, you haven’t returned a single nickel of your personal earnings, you haven’t fired a single senior executive. Instead, evidently, your definition of accountable is to push the blame to your low-level employees who don’t have the money for a fancy PR firm to defend themselves. It’s gutless leadership.”
Elizabeth Warren does not mess around when she gets in attack dog mode and goes after banks. After shutting down Strumpf’s weak attempts to defend his company’s methods with transcripts of some of his investor calls and Wall Street reports over the past few years, Warren continues the attack:
“When it all blew up, you kept your job, you kept your multimillion dollar bonuses, and you went on television to blame thousands of $12-an-hour employees who were just trying to meet cross sell quotas that made you rich… You should resign. You should give back the money you took while this scam was going on, and you should be criminally investigated by both the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission.”
Warren’s federal agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, fined Wells Fargo $100 million for their involvement in the scam. In addition, Wells Fargo agreed to pay almost as much ($85 million) to other government agencies.
Warren has long made big banks like Wells Fargo a central issue in her role as Senator. Watch the full video of her eviscerating John Stumpf below.
Feature Image via YouTube Screenshot