White House will not name Elizabeth Warren to lead consumer bureau

Alec Jacobs Contributor
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The White House will not name Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Washington Post reports, even though she spent the past year setting up the agency.

Warren has strong support from liberals, including Democratic Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank. Frank, who sponsored the legislation authorizing the creation of the bureau, said he’d be upset if Warren didn’t get the job. So would 88 fellow House members, who wrote a letter to President Obama last month imploring him to appoint her. (Warren: Consumer bureau ‘in reality is much better than the dream ever was’)

Republicans don’t like her as much. But they say their main concern with the CFPB is its structure. Republicans want a five-member commission to lead the new bureau as opposed to a single director.

Republicans have said they would block any single nominee put forth by the White House to lead the Bureau.

If the bureau doesn’t have a director in place when it opens, it won’t be able to carry out most of its responsibilities, including the writing of new rules and the overseeing of financial firms.

Though she won’t be in charge, the Washington Post says Warren’s “mark will still be felt.” Warren, tasked with creating the agency, handpicked its senior staff and earned the support of consumer advocacy groups.

The White House, which is strongly considering one of Warren’s deputies Raj Date for the job, is expected to nominate a director early this week. The bureau opens on Thursday.