Richard Cordray is taking heat once again due to rumors circulating that he intends to run for Governor of Ohio when his tenure as the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) ends.
The Republican Governors Association (RGA) has submitted a second request for information regarding Cordray’s actions via the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 522, to Raynell Lazier in order to find out if Cordray violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits government employees from running for office while still employed in their charge.
The letter cites two separate instances as grounds for obtaining the requested information: a report by WXVU saying Cordray had a phone call with the chairman of the Hamilton County Democratic Party; and a report by the Cleveland Plain Dealer announcing upcoming gubernatorial debates in September. Apparently, the RGA questions whether or not Cordray discussed participating in those debates.
The RGA requested a slew of information, including logs of Cordray’s cell phone and office phone from June 1, 2017 to present, as well as a copy of the director’s schedule from June to present. The letter notes that although the CFPB posts Cordray’s schedule online for transparency purposes, the director’s office has yet to post June or July’s schedule, which makes the RGA question the actual transparency of the office.
In addition, the request lists 10 people who could have corresponded with Cordray via his @consumerfinance.gov email: Tim Burke, Erie Meyer, Zach West, Kirsten Alvanitakis, Nelson Devezin, Rachel Rossi, Josh Thurston, Megan Joyce, Greg Beswick, Bridget Doherty, and Neil Patel. They also would like copies of any emails that reference the terms, “cordrayforohio.com,” “Cordray Committee,” or Gubanatorial Debate or Governor’s Debate or Ohio Debate.”
RGA Communications Director Jon Thompson had strong words for Director Cordray in an official statement: “Ohioans deserve to know whether Richard Cordray is using his Consumer Financial Protection Bureau office for political gain at the expense of taxpayers,” he said. “If these new revelations are correct, and Cordray did discuss potential gubernatorial debates with Ohio Democrats, he should admit truthfully what he discussed, if he is engaged in prohibited political activity, and why he is so focused on not doing his job.”