Today President Barack Obama nominated Robert Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Robert Cordray has proven to be an effective defender of consumer rights. And Elizabeth Warren he is not, to the relief of congressional Republicans, the banking lobby and the Treasury Secretary. The question now is whether Republicans will carry through their threat to block any nominee unless the Bureau itself is crippled.
President Obama did not choose the best candidate for the job, Ms. Warren, whom Campaign for America’s Future and hundreds of thousands of Americans had supported. We still maintain that she was the best for the job. Now she is free to become the independent champion of middle class and working families that the country needs. We look forward to helping support her powerful voice in holding Wall Street accountable.
Robert Cordray is a capable and outstanding nominee. There is no reason to obstruct the bureau from beginning its work to foster a banking system that works for responsible consumers and bankers … except to maintain a status quo that serves irresponsible bankers.
What Republicans do next will signal to the public where their loyalties lie.
If they believe the financial system should be safe for consumers, they will end their knee-jerk opposition and allow Mr. Cordray to get to work. If they believe, after the pervasive fraud and abuse of the last decade, that Wall Street should be allowed to fleece consumers at will – or more to the point, if they are so corrupted by the Wall Street money and lobbies – then they will certainly continue to obstruct the will of the Senate majority and the American people.
On your side or in their pocket – the answer will soon be apparent.