President Obama on Saturday called for the Senate to move quickly and approve the two consumer-minded nominees he wants to help oversee two key federal regulatory agencies in his second term.
Mr. Obama used his weekly radio and Internet address to tout the qualifications of Mary Jo White, his pick to head the Securities and Exchange Commission, and Richard Cordray, whose term at the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau expires later this year.
The president named Mr. Cordray to the post with a recess appointment in 2011, and now Mr. Obama wants the Senate to approve the former Ohio attorney general for a full term.
"Richard Cordray is a champion for American consumers," Mr. Obama said. "He's helped protect Americans from predatory lenders, launched a 'Know Before You Owe' campaign to help families make smart decisions about paying for college, and cracked down on credit card companies that charge hidden fees. But Richard's appointment runs out at the end of the year, and in order for him to stay on the job, the Senate needs to finally give him the vote he deserves."
Not all of the president's supporters are excited about the nomination of Ms. White, who has represented big banks and Wall Street firms since going into private practice after years as a federal prosecutor in New York City.
In his remarks on Saturday, though, the president described her as a tough, no-nonsense reformer.
"Mary Jo White has decades of experience cracking down on white-collar criminals and bringing mobsters and terrorists to justice," the president said. "At the SEC, she will help complete the task of reforming Wall Street and keep going after irresponsible behavior in the financial industry so that taxpayers don't pay the price."
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