Crapo: Republicans will block CFPB director nominations until agency is restructured

Michael Crapo

Michael Crapo

Sen. Michael Crapo (R-Idaho) said on Thursday that Republicans will block any nominee to the head the CFPB until the federal watchdog agency is “restructured and reformed.”

President Obama recently announced the re-nomination of CFPB Director Richard Cordray, whose first appointment as director remains a contentious topic among critics who maintain that the installment of Cordray violated the Constitution. Crapo said that Republicans plan to block Cordray’s nomination until issues within the agency are addressed, The Daily Caller reports.

“This issue isn’t about Richard Cordray,” Crapo said, according to The Daily Caller. “It is about the agency itself and how it was structured. We are not prepared to move forward with any nominee. That hasn’t gotten anything to do with the individual person who is at issue right now, Richard Cordray. I don’t think we’re ready to move forward with any nominee until the agency is restructured an reformed in a way that is proper.”

The CFPB’s design is largely attributed to former Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth Warren, who is now the first female senator from Massachusetts. The agency launched its operations in 2011 and is responsible for regulating the financial sector, including banks and credit unions, to protect consumer rights. Warren was originally intended to head the CFPB, but Senate Republicans blocked her nomination, leading to the appointment of Cordray as director.

“Our concerns are that the agency has given all of its power to one individual—the director,” Crapo said, The Daily Caller reports. “No board. No commission. And we think that needs to be corrected. And then secondly, there is no congressional oversight once that director is put into place over the budget. And in fact there is not even any kind of requirement that the financing for that committee or for that agency come from either private sector funding or from the government. The requirement is simply that the director has the ability to tap into the Fed and take the necessary resources that he or she wants. If we can correct those two things—and I think they should be correctable—then I think that you might see more willingness on the part of Republicans to move forward.”

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