Mt. Vernon Register-News

Opinion

January 15, 2014

Let employers see job applicant credit history

(Continued)

Hiring managers make decisions based on incomplete and imperfect information all the time; credit reports have no more potential to unjustly weed out potentially good employees than dozens of other things employers can ask about.

There’s also some brazen hypocrisy in the exemption Warren’s bill includes: The federal government and its contractors will still be able to require credit checks when hiring for positions that require a security clearance. This is curious given that Warren is so insistent that employers are irrational for wanting to look at credit reports.

So Warren apparently believes that everyone except the government should have to blindly hire people with a track record of financial trouble. Her disdain for the private sector and deference to government buttress the worst cliches about liberals.

Finally, remember that nothing in Warren’s bill proposes to create jobs. All that it will do is make it harder for workers with a history of financial responsibility to pair up with employers who value that.

We should leave it to the marketplace to decide how much credit history matters when it comes to hiring. Ten states have already passed laws restricting the use of credit reports in hiring.

That strikes me as an unreasonable intrusion into the relationship between employers and job applicants. We certainly don’t need the federal government to step in and make it the law for the other states that don’t want such restrictions.

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