Elizabeth Warren: The new sheriff in town

By Laurie Bennett

September 16, 2010 at 9:26am

It’s a rare financial wonk who inspires rap videos.

Last month, a rapper named Ryan Anthony Lumas — an employee of Best Buy - produced a video called “Sheriff Warren Rap,” calling for appointment of Harvard professor Elizabeth Warren to head the new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.

Whether Lumas’ endorsement helped or hurt Warren is debatable. After weeks of rumors, The New York Times and other news outlets report today that Warren will indeed get the job. Sort of.

Elizabeth Warren
Elizabeth Warren

Warren, a bankruptcy expert, is popular among consumer advocates and labor unions because of her criticism of unfair lending practices. Many Republicans view her as an opponent of business.

Rather than naming Warren director of the agency, a post that would have required Senate confirmation, the White House will appoint her as assistant to the president and special adviser to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. Her prime responsibility will be to launch the bureau, which was the centerpiece of the financial overhaul President Obama signed in July.

As the Wall Street Journal reports, the move will avoid contentious hearings, appease liberals who had called for Warren’s appointment, and annoy Republicans who had opposed her.

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