Warren makes the rounds in D.C. as Geithner praises her
Elizabeth Warren seems to be everywhere in Washington.
On Tuesday night, Warren--a Harvard law professor who is being promoted as the leading candidate to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau--dined with Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. On Wednesday, she ducked out early from a Congressional hearing about the $700 billion financial bailout that she is helping to oversee because she got called in by the White House for an unspecified meeting. She later attended the signing ceremony for the historic financial regulation bill with President Obama. Then she went out to lunch with Valerie Jarrett, Obama's trusted advisor.
The chatter over her possible nomination is turning into a full-on political fight with conservatives and bankers lining up against her and liberals and unions standing up to support her.
What Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner thinks of her candidacy has been a source of debate.
Warren, who heads the Congressional Oversight Panel to oversee the financial rescue program, and Geithner have sometimes clashed over its rollout. As recently as Wednesday, Warren she criticized Treasury for moving too slowly.
A report surfaced last week that Geithner has expressed opposition to her possible nomination.
Michael Barr, an assistant secretary at Treasury, and Deputy Assistant Attorney General Gene Kimmelman, are also considered candidates.
But starting Wednesday night Geithner made it a point to say supportive things about Warren.
Here's what he said on the Charlie Rose show:
"[S]he is an incredibly capable, effective advocate for reform. She was way ahead of her time, way ahead of the country in pointing out what was actually happening in the credit business. All the bad stuff was happening -- the looming housing crisis she was pioneering and pointing out those risks."
"[She is] probably the most effective advocate of reform we have in the country on these questions. So obviously, I think she would do a great job in that position."
"[L]ike anybody who has been a champion of reform, she's earned her enemies over time, and there's no doubt she would face criticism and opposition up there. But that's the price of entry to these jobs, because, again, if you're for change and reform you're going to earn some enemies."
At a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor:
"She represents to a large part of the country not just people caught up in the damage of the crisis but people who view this system as fundamentally broken. I think she would be a very effective leader of that institution and I think she has enormous credibility."
Here's an interesting video of Warren questioning Geithner in Sept. 2009 about the financial bailout: "Do you know where the money went?"
Ariana Eunjung Cha
July 22, 2010; 12:11 PM ET
Categories: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
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