|Victory: Cordray confirmed|
Yesterday, after a two-year fight, the Senate finally confirmed Richard Cordray, Elizabeth Warren's protégé, to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
This was no small feat.
Since the beginning of the Obama administration, petulant Senate Republicans have made political obstructionism their primary policy priority. And their go-to tool for creating gridlock has been the filibuster.
But yesterday, when the Senate Republicans were confronted with a unified Democratic caucus ready to reform the filibuster rather than allow the continued Republican obstructionism of presidential nominees, the Republicans waived the white flag and backed down.
As part of their agreement to head off changes to the filibuster, the Republicans agreed to allow votes on Cordray's nomination and those of six other presidential nominees, including Gina McCarthy to head the EPA and a slate of candidates to the National Labor Relations Board.
CREDO members have been an important voice in this fight. Tens of thousands took action to support the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and push President Obama to appoint a strong director to run it.
This year alone, over 1500 calls pro-Cordray calls were made by CREDO members to their Republican senators.
And the Democrats would not have been poised for victory without a strong movement behind them encouraging them to reform the filibuster -- a movement that CREDO members play a significant role in.
Still, while we should recognize this victory for what it is -- an important step toward empowering everday Americans against predatory financial institutions and practices -- we should also recognize this victory for what it is not.
Fundamentally, the Republicans backed down in order to stop the Democrats from taking a real step toward reforming the filibuster.
Without real filibuster reform, the Senate will still be plagued by rampant obstructionism. While President Obama will finally be afforded the historically unremarkable ability to choose which entirely qualified individuals he wants to work for him, we will still face an extreme crisis in the federal judiciary.
And the filibuster will still be used by the Republican minority to delay and derail positive legislation that would pass if it were put to a majority vote.
We will continue to push the Senate to fix the filibuster. And will continue to work with champions in the Senate like Jeff Merkley, Tom Udall and Tom Harkin to build a stronger consensus around the need for meaningful rules reform.
Make no mistake, your activism matters. It is part of why we have achieved this small, but important victory. And your activism will matter as we continue the fight going forward.
Thank you for being part of this fight.
Matt Lockshin, Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets