GOP Senators Mobilize Against Obama Consumer Czar

Friday, 06 May 2011 12:08 PM

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Almost 45 Senate Republicans say they will block Elizabeth Warren, or anyone, from running the Dodd-Frank bill’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unless President Barack Obama agress to reorganize the controversial new office, the Washington Wire blog of The Wall Street Journal reports.

Obama, Warren, consumer
President Barack Obama, announcing Elizabeth Warren's nomination as she stands by, faces political consequences over his choice. (Getty Images Photo)
All but three GOP senators signed a letter to the White House saying the office needs more oversight and less power vested in a single, unaccountable chief.

The White House has yet to reply, and it could ram through a recess appointment if it chose. But near-unanimous Republican opposition to the bureau in its present form could lead to a bloody re-nomination battle once the recess term expires and might cost Obama dearly on other issues where he needs bipartisan support in Congress.

The bureau is being set up under the supervision of Warren, a Harvard professor whose anti-Wall Street rhetoric has made her unpopular with business leaders. Even some congressional Democrats have suggested that Warren is too politically toxic to be confirmed as head of the consumer bureau.

Senate Republicans insist that whoever finally leads the bureau share responsibility for running it with an appointed commission. They also want the bureau’s budget and regulatory practices open to more congressional review.

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