March 19, 2013

The Senate Banking Committee has approved the nomination of Mary Jo White as the Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission. If confirmed by the full U.S. Senate, Ms. White will serve through June 5, 2014. In a separate action, the Banking Committee advanced Richard Cordray’s nomination to serve as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) for a five-year term. Mr. Cordray was appointed by President Obama in January 2012 through a recess appointment; unless the Senate confirms his nomination, his term will expire at the end of this year.  Thomas Perez of the Justice Department has been nominated to serve as President Obama’s next Labor secretary.
According to Cliff Andrews, Principal with NAFA lobbyist CapCity Advocates, there was little partisanship on the White vote: her nomination was approved by a 21-1 vote, with Ohio Democrat Sherrod Brown casting the only no vote. However, the 12-10 vote to approve Cordray’s nomination fell strictly along party lines, and his confirmation by the full Senate faces an uphill battle.  After the Cordray vote, Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) said that he and many others believe strongly that “structural and other changes” are needed at the CFPB to bring greater “accountability and transparency.”