The Supreme Court has chosen Paul Clement, a former solicitor general under President George W. Bush, to defend the current leadership structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in the case of Seila Law v. CFPB. The choice was necessary because the CFPB — along with the current solicitor general — have sided with Seila Law in determining that the current leadership structure of the agency is unconstitutional.
Clement currently works at the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis. He has argued nearly 100 cases before the Supreme Court, according to a published report. The report indicated that the cases Clement has argued before the Supreme Court were “broadly for business community interests” and that this case will put him at odds with such business groups as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
The House of Representatives had requested the opportunity to defend the CFPB’s current leadership structure, which allows for the director only to be fired cause, not at-will.
Should the Supreme Court determine the leadership structure is unconstitutional, it remains unclear exactly what would happen. Some possible options include allowing the president to fire the director for any reason, not just for cause, or completely changing the leadership structure to one resembling the Federal Trade Commission or Federal Communications Commission, which employ five-member boards that are topped by a chairman.
The Supreme Court has not yet set a date to hear arguments in this case.