The Trump administration insisted Saturday that OMB Director Mick Mulvaney was the rightful interim leader of the CFPB, but Democrats said that the appointment was illegal. It remains unclear who is legally in charge.
CFPB Deputy Director Leandra English filed a lawsuit late Sunday against the Trump administration challenging OMB Director Mick Mulvaney's appointment. The bureau's general counsel has sided with President Trump, however.
OMB Director Mick Mulvaney said he would "fix" the CFPB by ensuring it protected consumers without cutting off access to financial services. His comments came as a federal judge declined to rule yet on the legality of Mulvaney's appointment.
Employees at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau are privately questioning why outgoing director Richard Cordray abruptly tapped a 34-year-old chief of staff with no enforcement, supervisory or legal experience to head the embattled agency after he resigned.
Critics argue that the consumer bureau's independence is being undermined, and they worry that a precedent is being established that could hamper the autonomy of other U.S. financial regulators.
Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney backed a congressional effort to overturn the agency's short-term lending rule, said he planned to install more political appointees and acknowledged a possible prank played on him.
With leadership of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau resolved by a federal court, the banking industry is eager to find out what interim head Mick Mulvaney plans to do once he gets a handle on the agency, including whether he will delay pending new mortgage rules.
President Trump has tapped Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney as interim head of the CFPB. He has taken tough stances on the CFPB, its payday lending rule, housing finance reform and other issues pending before the agency.
How will Mick Mulvaney reshape the consumer watchdog agency? American Banker Editor-in-Chief Rob Blackwell shares his inside-the-Beltway take on the CFPB’s future.