On Thursday, September 30, 2021, the Senate voted to confirm Rohit Chopra as the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), ending a months-long effort to fill the position that was left vacant when President Biden asked Kathy Kraninger to step down from the position in January 2021.
Dave Uejio served as Acting Director over the last 9 months while Chopra wrapped up his stint as a member of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The process of confirming Chopra was also slowed by GOP opposition to his nomination. The Banking Committee's initial attempt to advance his nomination ended in a 12-12 tie, requiring the Senate to take extra steps to bring Chopra's confirmation to the floor for a final vote.
Chopra previously worked with Sen. Elizabeth Warren on establishing the CFPB back in 2008 and served as both the CFPB Assistant Director and the student loan ombudsperson after the agency launched in 2011. While Chopra was confirmed unanimously by the Senate in 2018 for his position at the FTC, he faced a much tighter vote this time around, with the votes falling 50-48 in his favor.
Consumer advocates have welcomed Chopra's confirmation. Jack Gillis, executive director of the Consumer Federation of America, stated "There could be no better consumer watchdog at the helm of this critical agency, and we are confident that the American consumer will be protected by their friend, Rohit Chopra."
In his new role, Chopra is expected to address the current student loan crisis, drawing on his work in that area while at the CFPB during the Obama administration. Chopra is also expected to rein in high-cost online lenders that have been skirting banking regulations and work to improve the accuracy of credit reporting.