Editorial roundup

• Akron Beacon Journal, Sept. 2

Donald Trump has said so many conflicting things about illegal immigration, and not just this campaign season. Recall his contention that Mitt Romney lost the 2012 presidential race, in part, because he alienated Latino voters with harsh talk about “self-deportation.” Or Trump expressing support three years ago for the Senate version of immigration reform, Republicans and Democrats backing the compromise legislation.

Then came his successful run for the Republican presidential nomination, launched with dark and ugly words about Mexico sending “rapists” and other criminals into this country, about his promise to build a wall along the southern border and his plan to dispatch a deportation strike force against the 11 million illegal immigrants here …

Where Trump fails his honesty test most conspicuously is in the conduct of his own candidacy. On Wednesday, he either was the typical politician, now trailing, looking to trim his sails and ride to a higher position in the polls or he was the pol playing to fears and resentments, the candidate who questioned the integrity of a federal judge because of his Mexican heritage. Then there is the candidate who has taken so many clashing positions it is hard to know where he stands.

Online: http://bit.ly/2ctMCTF


• The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer, Sept. 2

The payday loan problem continues to fester in Ohio, despite a 2008 referendum and state law seemingly banning these super-high-interest, short-term loans. The reasons: lenders’ apparent unquenchable ability to divert around attempted barricades and the Ohio legislature’s failure of will to counter these moves.

Into this breach has stepped the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, led by former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray. Earlier this year, the CFPB proposed nationwide rules to fight predatory lending with a proposal under which “payday loans will be severely restricted,” as The Plain Dealer’s Teresa Dixon Murray reported.

But maybe not restricted enough: The Coalition on Housing and Homelessness in Ohio (COHHIO) warned of a possible loophole in the CFPB’s proposed “ability to pay” rule requiring payday lenders to check whether a borrower can afford a loan. COHHIO said the rule could be evaded if lenders use the borrower’s repayment of a prior loan to demonstrate “ability to pay,” even when the person’s financial circumstances might have changed …

The General Assembly has a responsibility to Ohio voters to rein in a ruthless industry that’s defying them. It’s past time for lawmakers to act.

Online: http://bit.ly/2bO6KuE