Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Notes on "A Statement on the Recess Appointment of Elizabeth Warren"

So it's pretty clear that Republicans in the Senate aren't going to allow a confirmation vote for Elizabeth Warren, because they don't actually want a director for the new Consumer Finance Protection Bureau. A recess appointment is Obama's only real chance of getting a director, especially the director he wants (or should want). I've tried to make a point in the speech that Republican senators are attempting an end run around the legislative process, and that this isn't what the Senate's confirmation power is about. There's a line that I wasn't able to fit without making the speech longer than it needs to be, "I won't allow technicalities to replace the legislative process; if the minority doesn't want this law to go into effect, they'll have to introduce a bill and get it passed". I think that claim that the Republicans are taking advantage of technicalities- which might at well be a four letter word in America- should be made repeatedly when people speak in support of this move.

I also revisited the reasons for a consumer protection bureau. It's important for people to be reminded who the real villains of the financial crisis were, and that the Republicans are fighting so that they'll be able to continue taking advantage of people.

Of course, we'll see when the next opportunity the President will have to make a recess appointment. During the Memorial Day weekend Republicans took turns presiding over an empty chamber, and it looks like Congress will be in session over the fourth of July so Obama wouldn't be able to do just this. Of course, the Dems control the Senate, and can force a recess with a vote, but they'll have to wait until the debt ceiling is raised, to avoid the appearance of closing the Senate while there's crucial work to be done. Hopefully there will be a chance to make this appointment at some point this summer.

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