Two Senate Republicans are asking Vice President-Elect Mike Pence to ensure that CFPB Director Richard Cordray be fired “promptly” after the Trump Administration takes charge.
“Given the CFPB’s unconstitutional structure, removing Director Cordray would be consistent with President Trump’s oath to ‘preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States,’” Sens. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) said in a Monday letter to Pence.
The senators said that Cordray has vigorously supported an unconstitutional structure of the CFPB and pursued a harmful regulatory agenda.
The ability of the president to fire Cordray without cause is being fought in federal courts; and until a court rules otherwise, Trump can fire Cordray, the senators contend.
A panel of the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the structure of the agency is unconstitutional since it is governed by a single director who can only be removed for cause. The panel said that the president has the power to fire the director for any reason, but has stayed its order.
The CFPB and the Obama Administration have asked that the full D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals consider the case.
The two senators said that the CFPB is the “single most-egregious” example of the government delegating lawmaking authority to federal agencies.
They said that Dodd-Frank granted the agency sweeping authority to regulate large portions of the economy, made it exempt from the annual appropriations process and gave all of its power to a single director.
Cordray is expected to continue his regulatory posture even after President Obama leaves office, the senators said.
“Director Cordray’s removal will be the first marker in the long process of rolling-back an agency that combines the powers of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches into the hands of a few unaccountable Washington elites,” the senators concluded.
House Republicans have pushed legislation that would convert the agency into a five-member commission and subject it to the annual appropriations process.
However, the Senate has not considered the legislation.