Senate GOP Blocks Obama CFPB Nominee

Richard Cordray won't head consumer protection bureau
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2011 10:39 AM CST
Senate Republicans Block Obama Nominee Richard Cordray to Head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Rich Cordray.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

As expected, Senate Republicans today blocked President Obama's choice to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau he created. Few questioned Richard Cordray's credentials for the job, notes the AP, which reports that the former Ohio attorney general fell victim to a "particularly nasty partisan fight." Only one of the Senate's 47 Republicans—interestingly, Scott Brown, who likely faces off against Elizabeth Warren in his re-election campaign next year—joined the Democrats in voting for Cordray, leaving them short of the 60 necessary votes.

"This is not about the nominee, who appears to be a decent person and may very well be qualified," said Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch. "It's about a process that is running out of control." Republicans complain that the agency, which officially opened in July, enjoys far too much power with far too little accountability; 45 Senate Republicans have signed a letter to Obama pledging to vote against any nominee to head the agency unless changes are made in its structure. (More Consumer Financial Protection Bureau stories.)

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