Consumer protection nominee promises cooperation

September 6, 2011 - 3:05 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama's nominee to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is playing down the lawsuits his agency will be able to file and promising to be accountable to members of Congress.

In remarks prepared for his confirmation hearing Tuesday with the Senate Banking Committee, Richard Cordray says legal actions can be slow, costly and unnecessarily acrimonious. The former Ohio attorney general says he will use litigation "judiciously," and hopes to instead use other powers to resolve problems — issuing rules, writing reports and examining large banks and many nonbank institutions.

The new bureau was created after the financial crisis of three years ago.

Though Democrats control the Senate, Cordray's nomination is in deep trouble. Republicans have promised to block any nominee unless the agency is made more accountable.