The lawyer picked to defend the leadership structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau before the Supreme Court is showing that he has completely finished all of the Kool-Aid and will not be soft-playing his arguments.
Calling the arguments put forth by Seila Law that the CFPB’s leadership structure “remarkably weak,” Paul Clement said in his brief that the decisions made by Kathleen Kraninger since she took over as director of the agency prove there is no reason to “invalidate an Act of Congress.”
“The current director views herself as serving at the pleasure of the President,” Clement wrote in his brief, which was filed with the Supreme Court yesterday. “That she takes that position is hardly surprising.”
The CFPB issued Seila Law a CID seeking answers to seven interrogatories and four requests for documents. Seila Law refused to provide the information, leading the CFPB to file a petition with a District Court, which sided with the regulator. Seila Law appealed that ruling to the Ninth Circuit, which also sided with the CFPB. Seila then appealed the ruling to the Supreme Court.
Seila Law is seeking to have the Supreme Court invalidate the entire section of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act which created the CFPB.
Clement is a former Solicitor General under President George W. Bush who now works at Kirkland & Ellis. He has argued nearly 100 cases before the Supreme Court.
Noting that the original enforcement action began under former Director Richard Cordray, Clement argues that the situation has changed since Seila Law first made its argument that the leadership structure of the CFPB was unconstitutional.
“Whatever was true when this suit was first filed, the theory of the unitary executive appears alive and well in the Director’s office,” Clement wrote. “The dispute here is not just unripe, but entirely theoretical. This case simply does not present a proper occasion for this Court to resolve the undoubtedly important question petitioner asks it to decide.”