Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Will Republicans Regret Blocking Warren's Appointment to the CFPB?

Since President Obama decided to look in another direction for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, speculation is that Elizabeth Warren has an eye on Scott Brown's (R-MA) senate seat. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee has already launched a "Draft Warren for Senate" campaign and is raising money in case she decides to run.

It could get really, really awkward in the Senate dining room come 2013. RepublicOns in both chambers think it's OK to berate Elizabeth Warren, once the leading contender to run the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The bureau was Warren's idea and is part of a sweeping reform package passed in the wake of the Wall Street screw-ups that caused the recession. Warren has been running the operation without the title, and now she won't get that, since Republicans vowed to stop her nomination if President Obama appointed her to the job.

Wall Street doesn't like Warren, which under the circumstances, should hardly be a barrier. Then there are the Republicans who don't like the consumer protection board at all. Why would they want anything to protect consumers when the cash flows directly from Wall St. to their coffers. Holding up any nomination to force changes in a law already passed by officials elected to office by voters is nothing other than extortion and a brazen effort to rewrite history.

In the end, Obama decided to nominate former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to head the bureau. Maybe he will be confirmed or more likely, the GOP will hold up any nomination to thwart the enforcement of a law they don't like. Warren is being encouraged by Democrats to run for Brown's U.S. Senate seat. While Brown has a strong war chest thanks to the Koch Brothers, any Democrat in deep-blue Massachusetts would present a strong challenge to Brown, particularly in a presidential election year. If Warren runs and wins, Senate RepublicOns should hope she has a short memory or a very forgiving nature. Dealing with Warren as a colleague is much more delicate than dealing with her as head of a consumer protection board. Somehow I don't get the feeling she has a short memory!

Elizabeth Warren joins Rachel Maddow to discuss the nomination of Cordray and the ongoing RepublicOn obstruction leading to her not being able to lead the agency she assembled.

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