House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) on Wednesday predicted that the Obama administration's decision to recess-appoint Richard Cordray as director of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) would lead to numerous legal challenges against the agency that will render it unable to function for the foreseeable future.
"President Obama has delegitimized the CFPB and has opened the agency up to legitimate legal challenges that will cripple it for years," Bachus said. "The greatest threat to our economy right now is uncertainty, and the President just guaranteed there will be even more uncertainty."
...Bachus was one of a several Republicans who blasted the Cordray nomination as an end-run around what had been an established rule that no recess appointments can be made as long as the Senate is meeting in occasional pro forma sessions. The Senate met in a pro forma session on Tuesday, and has another one planned for Friday.
Bachus said the decision to ignore this precedent is an attack on the Constitution.
"The President's unprecedented decision to attempt to circumvent the Constitution and ignore the law he himself signed is the clearest indication yet that he has abandoned any effort to work in a bipartisan manner to strengthen accountability and oversight of this new government bureaucracy," he said.
President Obama is planning to announce today that, in addition to his recess appointment of former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray as the first director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, he will also use his recess appointment powers to place Department of Labor Attorney Sharon Block, labor lawyer Richard Griffin, and NLRB counsel Terence Flynn to the National Labor Relations Board.
Like the CFPB, Republicans have spent the past year blocking nominations to the NLRB in an effort to keep the agency from functioning...
All 47 Senate Republicans have warned Obama of a “constitutional conflict” should he choose to use his recess appointment powers — authority he is well within his right to use...