Home Budget, Economy Progressives Ask Obama to Break GOP Roadblock, Appoint Warren

Progressives Ask Obama to Break GOP Roadblock, Appoint Warren


elizabethwarren_395More than 90 House Democrats, including Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA), have sent a letter to President Obama asking him to circumvent a promised GOP filibuster by issuing a recess appointment for consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren as the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Here’s the letter:

We appreciate your leadership last year in supporting the strong financial reforms in the Dodd­-Frank bill that responded to the financial meltdown on Wall Street that led to the worst recession since the Depression.

A key element of that effort was the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with the goals of making prices clear, risks clear, making financial markets work for families and particularly protecting service members and their families from abusive financial practices. Since you appointed Professor Warren to “stand up” the bureau, she has laid the foundation as a strong advocate for consumers – something that seems to strike fear among those who are opposed to reform.

Regretfully, Republicans in the Senate have now made it clear that they oppose reform. They have vowed that they will not allow consideration of  any nominee to head the CFPB until the bureau is weakened. They would rather hold your appointment hostage and obstruct the process than make sure consumers have a strong advocate on their side.

Since Republican Senators have said that no one is acceptable unless the law is weakened, we would urge you to nominate Professor Warren as the CFPB’s first Director anyway. If Republicans in the Senate indeed refuse to consider her, we request that you use your constitutional authority to make her a recess appointment. We can think of  no better person to be the first Director of this incredibly important consumer financial protection regulator.

Rep. Bobby Scott’s office says he supports a recess appointment for Warren and will be adding his voice to the effort soon. Rep. Gerry Connolly’s office tells me that while Connolly supports Warren, he opposes the use of recess appointments under any circumstances. You can add your name to the Progressive Change Campaign Committee’s petition to President Obama to make a recess appointment at BoldProgressives.org.