On January 10, Rep. Maxine Waters, the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, and 20 Democratic panel members sent a letter to President-elect Donald Trump urging him to reject calls by Republicans to fire CFPB Director Richard Cordray. Among other things, the letter argues against “entering into a protracted – and likely unsuccessful – legal battle to oust” Director Cordray before his term expires in July 2018. Specifically, the letter “caution[s]” the President-Elect “not to engage in partisan litigation, particularly since it is likely to be unsuccessful and will needlessly divert government resources away from other important priorities.” The lawmakers contend further that removing the CFPB Director “for cause” would be an “extraordinary remedy” that is “without historical precedent,” and which “must be subjected to enhanced congressional, judicial, and public scrutiny.”
As previously covered by InfoBytes, a majority of a panel of U.S. Circuit Court for District of Columbia concluded in October 2016 that the CFPB’s governance structure was unconstitutional, and, as a corrective measure, authorized the President to fire the Bureau’s sole Director at will—a ruling for which the Bureau now seeks rehearing en banc.