I object as much as anyone to the concept of the “imperial presidency.” I didn’t like it when a Republican president was advancing that policy, and one of the biggest “issues” I have with Obama is the degree to which he has followed the same path, thereby making the process no longer a partisan issue but turning it into a normal part of our method of governance.
That being said, the president must be allowed to appoint people to positions authorized by Congress. The present Congressional practice of blocking those appointments out of petty partisanship is appalling, and I have no problem with Obama using recess appointments to whatever degree he finds necessary. I think, in fact, that he has been remarkably restrained in his use of them.
The only problem I have with his appointment of Richard Cordray as director of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau is not with the appointee, or the method, or with Obama; it’s with the Bureau itself. This is one of those Congressional abdications which I objected to when it was first passed by Congress as part of the Dodd-Frank illusion.
It was created with enormous powers and no oversight. The rules which it will impose on banks, credit unions, lenders of every description, financial institutions of every description, debt collectors, and essentially every business which deals with business on a non-cash basis, were not written by Congress but will be created by the bureau and will not be subject to review by Congress or any elected legislative body.
I have a problem with unaccountable government bureaucracies. The only thing worse than regulations being subject to the whims of 535 legislators elected by the population of this nation is regulations being subject to the whim of one person appointed by an imperial president.