President Obama Considers Former Banker to Head Up New Consumer Bureau

In a change of course, President Obama is considering Raj Date, rather than the current chief architect Elizabeth Warren, to head the newly-formed and soon to be empowered Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Mr. Date has over 10 years of experience as a banker and as a consultant to financial institutions. Since February he has been the CFPB’s Associate Director for Research, Markets & Regulations, heading up the agency’s efforts to develop a regulatory plan for products including credit cards and home mortgages. Mr. Date’s extensive industry experience could make him a more plausible candidate for the post than Ms. Warren, whose candidacy has been adamantly opposed by Senate Republicans.

However, many opponents are likely to remain. As discussed in a prior post, Republicans have led an effort to change the structure of the CFPB. In addition, 44 Republican Senators have vowed to oppose the nomination of any director so long as the structure of the CFPB remains intact. Even for a nominee who has walked in the shoes of banks for years, it would likely be a contentious fight along partisan lines.