Despite speculation, Cordray doesn’t announce run for governor at Ohio event

Date for Ohio Democratic Gubernatorial Debate quickly approaching

Rumors around Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray running for Ohio governor are reaching a boiling point as the debate for the Ohio Democratic Gubernatorial Debate quickly approaches.

All eyes were on Cordray’s scheduled speech at the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations’ (AFL-CIO) Labor Day Picnic on Monday since it appeared to be the perfect setting to announce his run for Ohio governor.

But as Monday came and went, so did any announcement from Cordray on running for governor, once again opening the door for speculation on when he would run.

Alan Kaplinsky, a partner at Ballard Spahr who has also been closely following Cordray’s moves, questioned in a blog post if he would announce soon in order to participate in the Ohio Democratic Gubernatorial Debate on Sept. 12.

Now with Sept. 12 only a week away, Cordray is speculated to only announce after he issues a final payday loan rule. So until a final rule is announced, it appears as if the industry can expect him at the bureau.

The speech on Monday, as Kaplinsky explained, could’ve easily been used to announce a bid for governor though.

From Kaplinsky’s bog:

If he had used the occasion to launch his campaign, he could have used essentially the same speech.  Isaac Boltansky observes “[T]he speech venue, the political cadence of the remarks and even the reference to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the end of the speech reinforce our belief that Director Cordray will depart the Bureau in the coming weeks.”

Rather than announce any new regulations or initiatives, Cordray used the speech to chronicle his time at the bureau.

Here’s a snippet from the end of his speech that also sounds like it could fit a gubernatorial run.

Economic injustice and illegal practices in consumer financial markets break that promise. That is why our work will always matter. As Dr. Martin Luther King taught us, economic rights are also civil rights. And they matter not just to some of us, but to all of us. We work with many strong leaders who strive to secure economic justice for more Americans. But when we fail to secure both economic rights and civil rights, we fall short of a just society.

We know we can do better, but it takes our people and our government, working hand in hand, to make that happen. Eleanor Roosevelt, who was herself an active member of the AFL-CIO through the Newspaper Guild, said of this holiday: “On Labor Day we must remember that this nation is founded to do away with classes and special privilege; that employer and worker have the same interest, which is to see that everyone in this nation has a life worth living.” We must all find our own ways to dedicate ourselves to that great task. Thank you again for having me here today.

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