As quickly as rumors started to spread that President Donald Trump should fire Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Cordray, so did talks that he will leave the bureau to run for Ohio governor. But that’s not to say that both couldn’t technically happen.
Right now, key government officials, including the president himself, seem convinced that Cordray will announce he is leaving the bureau and running for Ohio governor soon.
Under Ohio law, Cordray can’t run for Ohio governor if he is currently engaged in politics, as an article in Cleveland.com by Andrew Tobias explained, meaning he has to put in his resignation as the leader of the CFPB.
House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas has stated before that he is surprised Cordray has yet to announce his bid for Ohio governor, reemphasizing that point again in a public statement Wednesday.
On Wednesday, Codray attended House Democrats’ weekly caucus meeting to talk about what more can be done to ensure a financial sector that benefits all Americans, an article in Poltico by Heather Caygle stated.
Hensarling stated in response to Cordray’s attendance, “Everyone knows Mr. Cordray will likely leave the CFPB soon and pursue political office in Ohio again, but his attendance at what amounts to nothing more than a Democrat pep rally shows just how partisan and politicized he and his supposed ‘independent’ agency truly are.” Cordray served as Ohio Attorney General from 2009 to 2011, here is his interview with HousingWire from that time.
“Liberal elites in Washington want to keep the Bureau unaccountable to hardworking taxpayers so they can continue to wield it as a political war machine. We’ve already seen the abuses that occurred when Democrats used the IRS as their attack dog and unleashed financial regulators to go after legally operating businesses with ‘Operation Choke Point.’ The Financial CHOICE Act holds financial regulators and the CFPB accountable so it can be the consumer protection ‘cop on the beat’ that Americans need,” said Hensarling.
Back when Hensarling previously stated he was surprised that Cordray hadn’t announced his bid for Ohio governor, his other ultimatum for Cordray was to be fired.
Either way, Hensarling wants Cordray gone as he is currently pushing for an act that would overhaul the bureau entirely, including getting rid of Cordray.
A firing for Cordray doesn’t directly spell out bad news though. An article in Bloomberg by Alex Ebert stated:
“If you’re going to run as the anti-Trump candidate, what better than to be fired by President Trump?” — Gerry Sachs, former CFPB senior counsel for policy and strategy, who is now at Paul Hastings LLP, told Bloomberg BNA.
However, the article continued:
Cordray might be better leaving on his own terms rather than getting fired, political observers say. Trump could define Cordray’s legacy in any firing announcement and some Ohio voters might be more apt to believe the president’s version of events.
“I think the conventional wisdom that if he gets fired he enters as a martyr is too simplistic,” Democratic political consultant Bill Burges, owner of Burges and Burges, told Bloomberg BNA.
Whichever route Cordray chooses to take, there are key deadlines approaching fast that will give some indication of his choice.
The Bloomberg article stated that Cordray’s window to enter the Ohio governor race is fast closing, noting that he needs to enter the race by the end of summer, well ahead of the Ohio filing deadline, but nearly a year before his CFPB appointment ends.
And if he does choose to run, it looks likes odds are in his favor, with most names in the hat coming from lesser-known Democrats.
Ultimately, Cordray’s time at the CFPB will come to a close in July 2018, giving him a little more than a year left at the bureau if that’s the path he chooses.