President Obama is set to announce today that Elizabeth Warren will join the administration in a special advisory role to help form the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a watchdog agency she first proposed back in 2007.
By giving Warren a role in creating the bureau rather than running it, the President avoids a confirmation fight in the Senate while appeasing prominent lawmakers, progressives and labor unions who have all called for her nomination to run the new bureau.
The new agency Warren will be creating is part of the sweeping Wall Street reform bill that Congress passed earlier this summer. In 2007 Warren, a Harvard Law professor and bailout watchdog, proposed the creation of "a new regulatory body to protect consumers who use credit cards, home mortgages, car loans, and a host of other products.
"Clearly it is time for a new model of financial regulation, one focused primarily on consumer safety rather than corporate profitability," she wrote in the summer of 2007.
While Warren led the charge for greater consumer protections, she was far from a shoo-in to oversee the new agency. Some prominent members of the administration and Congress questioned whether Warren -- a straight-shooting, no-holds-barred critic of both the financial industry and the federal government -- might be too controversial to win Senate confirmation if chosen by President Obama.
The Oklahoma native has also routinely criticized some of the politics and decisions of Timothy Geithner and the Treasury Department he runs. This summer she singled them out as being "behind the curve" with their foreclosure prevention program.
That type of blunt talk is typical for Warren, who is determined to create real change and help for middle class Americans. But now that Warren will be working within the Washington system, some wonder if the financial industry will throw their full weight into the fight. With their army of lobbyists, enacting real change in the financial industry could be a difficult battle for Warren.
Our question to you today: Do You Think Elizabeth Warren Will Bring Change to Wall Street?