Trump Names Mick Mulvaney Interim CFPB Director, Daily Operations Remain in Question

  • William Hoffman
  • November 21, 2017

Via Wikimedia Commons

Even as President Donald Trump names Mick Mulvaney as the temporary interim director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, questions remain about who will oversee the day-to-day operations of the auto industry’s chief regulator.

Richard Cordray announced his resignation from the role of director of the CFPB last week and officially departs at the end of November. Without an approved permanent deputy director to take over the agency, Acting Deputy Director David Silberman would only assume the role of director in the event that Trump does not appoint someone to an interim director role.

Late last week, the White House named Mulvaney as the interim leader under a federal vacancies law, which allows Trump to replace an outgoing director temporarily with someone from another agency who has already won Senate approval. Mulvaney is already serving as director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), which makes him eligible to take over the agency he once called “a sad, sick joke.”

However, Mulvaney is expected to name someone else or a team of people to run the CFPB on a “day-to-day-basis” as he continues to run the OMB, according to Bloomberg. It’s unclear if Silberman and other current CFPB leaders would be included in that team.

Although Cordray was the first officially appointed director of the bureau, there have technically been three other leaders before him. Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner inherited the role, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) briefly took the reigns after him, and then Raj Date served an interim term before Cordray.

Despite all those leaders coming from President Barack Obama’s administration, not everyone was a big pro-consumer advocate, Molly Calkins, partner at Akerman LLP, told AFN.

“Date came from the financial industry, and used his time in CFPB leadership to defend the financial industry and ensure regulations allowed handsome profits for lenders — such as his next venture Fenway Summer LLC,” she said. “The next CFPB leader should not be presumed friendly to the financial services industry based solely on the current administration any more than Date should have been presumed consumer-friendly based solely on the administration during which he served.”

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