In a move to ensure the functioning of an important consumer protection agency in the face of escalating GOP obstructionism, the White House announced that President Obama will install Richard Cordray as the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in a recess appointment today.
Marge Baker of People For the American Way issued the following statement:
“A recess appointment for such a highly qualified and mainstream nominee should not have been necessary, but the Senate GOP left the President with no other option. President Obama has made a good faith effort to nominate mainstream, respected nominees for executive and judicial positions, but has been met at every turn by a Republican Congress unwilling to perform even its most basic duties. Today, the president took a necessary step toward ensuring a fair and functioning government for all Americans.
“The president’s appointment of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was critical. All but two Republican senators have publicly stated that they have no objection to Cordray himself but are unwilling to confirm any nominee unless the agency is significantly weakened. This is plain and simple dereliction of duty, and the president had no choice but to counter it with a recess appointment. With Cordray at its helm, the CFPB can now address the full set of responsibilities Congress assigned it to protect American consumers.”