“The president urges the Senate to confirm Richard Cordray to the head of the bureau,” Carney said. “As the letter you cited demonstrates, he has substantially — substantially more than a majority of support within the U.S. Senate. That should surely be enough for confirmation.”
Complicating Cordray’s path to confirmation and potentially giving momentum to GOP calls for an overhaul was a decision made last week by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, which ruled that the recess appointments of three National Labor Relations Board members were unconstitutional. Cordray’s appointment was made at the same time, although the court did not address it. His appointment is being challenged in a separate case.
For now, Democrats are resisting changes to the bureau, preferring to wait and see if the court’s decision is ultimately upheld.
In the meantime, Republicans will continue their criticism of the agency. Sen. Mike Johanns, a Nebraska Republican who sits on the Banking panel, introduced legislation (S 190) on Thursday to bar the transfer of Fed funds to the bureau to carry out any activity that hinges upon confirmation of a director.