- - Sunday, July 17, 2011

WHITE HOUSE

Obama taps Cordray for U.S. consumer job

Reigniting a partisan fight over banking regulations, President Obama intends to nominate former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to lead a consumer protection bureau that was a central feature of a law overhauling the rules that govern the financial sector.

Mr. Obama plans to announce the nomination formally Monday, the White House said Sunday. Republicans immediately threatened to block Mr. Cordray’s Senate confirmation.

In choosing Mr. Cordray, 52, Mr. Obama bypassed Elizabeth Warren, a favorite of consumer groups. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will officially begin its oversight and regulatory work July 21. Its role is to be a government watchdog over mortgages, credit cards and other forms of lending.

While Democrats on the Senate banking committee promised to move quickly on the nomination, Sen. Richard C. Shelby of Alabama, the top Republican on the panel, said Republicans would block Mr. Cordray as well unless Mr. Obama seeks changes in the agency.

“Until President Obama addresses our concerns by supporting a few reasonable structural changes, we will not confirm anyone to lead it,” he said. “No accountability, no confirmation.”

CAMPAIGN

Cain says communities free to bar mosques

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said Sunday that communities have a right to ban mosques because of Muslim efforts to inject Shariah law into the U.S.

Appearing on “Fox News Sunday,” the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO said protests and legal challenges to a planned mosque in a Tennessee city are an example of local residents pushing back.

Asked whether his view could lead any community to stand up in opposition to a proposed mosque, Mr. Cain replied, “They could say that.” He pointed to opposition to the planned mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn., as an example.

“Let’s go back to the fundamental issue that the people are basically saying that they are objecting to,” Mr. Cain said. “They are objecting to the fact that Islam is both religion and [a] set of laws, Shariah law. That’s the difference between any one of our other traditional religions, where it’s just about religious purposes. The people in the community know best. And I happen to side with the people in the community.”

DELAWARE

O’Donnell attorney seeks investigation into CREW

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