Thomas Phippen on August 31, 2017
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) director Richard Cordray is being intentionally vague about whether he plans to run for Ohio governor as a Democrat, and Republicans are getting upset.
Friends of Cordray have hinted for months that he will run for governor, meaning he would have to leave his post at the CFPB before his term is officially up in 2018 to campaign, but Cordray not been forthcoming about his plans.
Texas Republican Rep. Jeb Hensarling, who chairs the House Committee on Financial Services which oversees the CFPB, asked Cordray whether he plans to finish out his term.
“You ask whether I intend to serve my full statutory term,” Cordray said in a letter to to Hensarling Wednesday. “At this time, I have no further insights to provide on that subject.”
“I am disappointed by Director Cordray’s steadfast refusal to be transparent with the public about his intentions,” Hensarling said in a statement to Reuters. “If he intends to serve his full term, there is no reason not to say so. The only reasonable conclusion is that he therefore harbors partisan political ambitions, which calls into question the propriety of all of his recent and future actions as CFPB Director.”
Cordray is the first director of the CFPB, which was created by the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, charged with to standing up for consumers to make sure everyone is treated fairly.
Running for political office while holding a position in the federal government violates the Hatch Act designed to protect the administration from partisanship. Hensarling asked the Office of Special Counsel to investigate a potential Hatch Act violation in July after an Ohio supreme court justice and friend of Cordray told Cleveland.com that Cordray was mounting a gubernatorial campaign as a Democrat.
Hensarling has not been quiet about his disapproval of Cordray, and even asked President Donald Trump to fire him.
“I believe the president is clearly justified in dismissing you and I call upon the president… to do just that, and to do it immediately,” Hensarling told Cordray at an April hearing.
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