Obama chooses former Ohio Attorney general to head consumer protection bureau

Alec Jacobs Contributor
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The White House announced Sunday that President Obama will nominate Richard Cordray, the former attorney general of Ohio, to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which opens Thursday.

“Richard Cordray has spent his career advocating for middle class families, from his tenure as Ohio’s Attorney General, to his most recent role as heading up the enforcement division at the CFPB and looking out for ordinary people in our financial system,” the president said in statement. (White House will not name Elizabeth Warren to lead consumer bureau)

News broke this week that Obama ruled out nominating Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard law professor who spent the last year creating and staffing the agency, to the bureau’s top post.

His statement also thanked Warren “not only for her extraordinary work standing up the new agency over the past year, but also for her many years of impassioned leadership, and her fierce defense of a simple idea: ordinary people deserve to be treated fairly and honestly in their financial dealings.”

Like many Democrats in Congress, Stephanie Taylor, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, wanted Warren to get the job. Her group circulated a number of petitions online, ultimately collecting more than 350,000 signatures for WeSupportWarren.org.

In a statement, Taylor said: “With her track record of standing up to Wall Street and fighting for consumers, Elizabeth Warren was the best qualified to lead this bureau that she conceived — and we imagine Richard Cordray would agree. That said, Rich Cordray has been a strong ally of Elizabeth Warren’s and we hope he will continue her legacy of holding Wall Street accountable.”

Cordray will face a possibly insurmountable nomination process, as Senate Republicans have already said they will refuse to support any single nominee. Instead, they believe the bureau should be lead by a five-member commission.

Obama will announce his intention to nominate Cordray Monday at the White House.