The Tail Wagging the Dog? Senate Republicans Block Confirmation of CFPB Director, White House Calls on State Attorneys General for Assistance

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The Tail Wagging the Dog? Senate Republicans Block Confirmation of CFPB
Director, White House Calls on State Attorneys General for Assistance
By Rebecca E. Neely


In what appears to be a classic case of the tail wagging the dog, the Senate Republicans are holding up the confirmation of a
director for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which was formed in 2010 following Congress’s approval of a massive
revamping of the nation’s financial system.




During this past summer, Richard Cordray, a former attorney          What’s the hold up? That Cordray comes with glowing
general in Ohio who was well known for aggressively pursuing         references and possesses significant qualifications seems to
foreclosure fraud, was selected by Obama to manage the new           the consensus among all parties involved.
agency, but he must be confirmed by the Senate before he can
do so.                                                               That the CFPB combines powers formerly spread over seven
                                                                     different agencies appeared to be a step forward as far as
According to the October 18th washingtonpost.com article,            efficiency goes, but Senate Republicans want, not a director,
“State attorneys general push for Cordray to lead federal            but a five-member board to run the show. This in turn, would
consumer agency”, the White House has, in recent days, called        require the agency to route through Congress for funding.
upon a group of state attorneys general from both parties
“to help break a blockade by Senate Republicans of President         The leverage? Until a director is confirmed the CFPB has no
Obama’s nominee to lead the controversial new federal                authority to create rules and oversee financial institutions — in
consumer watchdog agency.”                                           essence, the very purpose for which the agency was created in
                                                                     the first place.
Obama economic adviser Brian Deese, who was with said
attorneys general on a conference call earlier in the week,          Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) was quoted in the article
along with reporters, was quoted as saying: “It’s important          as having said last week in an interview with the Heritage
from our perspective to continue to push and continue to add         Foundation: “We haven’t heard from the president. Maybe he’s
voices. There is no reason why the Senate cannot and should          off campaigning. Until we hear from him, I don’t believe we’re
not move forward.”                                                   going to confirm anyone.”


The situation has become politically charged, with pressure          Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) called the
mounting from various sources, including the growing Occupy          actions of Republicans “obstructionism.”
Wall Street movement and consumer aggravation regarding
new bank fees. Obama is now clamoring for a director, after
being criticized for waiting almost a year following the CFPB’s
creation to select a nominee.




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Description: In what appears to be a classic case of the tail wagging the dog, the Senate Republicans are holding up the confirmation of a director for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which was formed in 2010 following Congress’s approval of a massive revamping of the nation’s financial system.