fresh voices from the front lines of change







It really is very simple.

Will the President name the best leader — Elizabeth Warren — to head the Consumer Finanical Protection Bureau? Nominate her. Challenge the Senate Republican threat to filibuster her (or any) nomination. And if a minority blocks her confirmation, name her in a recess appointment.

But Warren’s opposition comes not only from Senate Republicans, eager to curry favor with the big banks. It comes, by all reports, from Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, ever solicitous of Wall Street’s concerns. And this White House is ever more ready to switch than fight. So now the administration is floating the notion that it will name a Warren deputy to head the bureau.

This trial balloon won’t get off the ground. Every consumer activist, every informed citizen, an army of commentators, bloggers, organizers and opinion leaders will be simply outraged if Elizabeth Warren is not nominated to head the bureau that she conceived, championed and constructed.

The Warren test cannot be ducked. If the president names someone else, he gets the worst of both worlds. The Republicans will still block the nomination, demanding that the bureau be neutered. And the White House will be savaged across the progressive community for demonstrating once more that it caters far more to bankers than to the customers who are too often their victims.

It really is simple. Name the best person to the job. Take on the fight. Help Americans understand who is on their side. No excuses. No dodges. There are no acceptable alternatives. Elizabeth Warren has demonstrated her leadership, her independence, her loyalty. This is not a hard test.

(To sign a petition protesting the obstruction of the Warren appointment, click here.)

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