Obama Will Appoint Cordray Watchdog

Bucks GOP with recess appointment

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Jan 4, 2012 9:31 AM CST

(Newser) – President Obama is thumbing his nose at Republican opposition and will today name a new US chief consumer watchdog: Richard Cordray. Yep, the same Cordray who Senate Republicans blocked early last month. Obama's decision to make a recess appointment is certain to cause an uproar—he's essentially declaring the Senate's short off-and-on legislative sessions a sham intended to block his appointments, and the White House is expecting considerable criticism and perhaps a court challenge.

But the White House says Obama was left with little choice to get the consumer agency fully running after months of stalemate. With a director in place, the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will be able to start overseeing the mortgage companies, payday lenders, debt collectors, and other financial companies often blamed for practices that helped tank the US economy. Obama will announce his decision later today during an economic event in Ohio, with Cordray alongside him. Cordray is to take over the job later in the week and stands to serve for at least the next two years, covering the length of the Senate's session.

In this July 18, 2011 file photo, President Barack Obama shakes hands with former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray.
In this July 18, 2011 file photo, President Barack Obama shakes hands with former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray.   (Manuel Balce Ceneta)
FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2011 file photo, Rich Cordray, assistant director of Enforcement for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is seen in Washington. Senior administration officials tell The Associated Press that President Barack Obama will use a recess appointment to name Cordray on Wednesday as the nation’s...
FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2011 file photo, Rich Cordray, assistant director of Enforcement for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is seen in Washington. Senior administration officials tell...   (Jacquelyn Martin)
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