Mick Mulvaney, the Acting Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), has informed the agency’s staff that he has no plans to fire or reassign Eric Blankenstein, the CFPB’s Policy Director of Supervision, Enforcement and Fair Lending, after news emerged that he authored anonymous blog posts in 2004 that questioned the veracity of some hate crime reporting.
The Hill obtained an internal CFPB e-mail
from Mulvaney, who acknowledged the pushback from some of the agency’s employees, which also included the demand that Mulvaney halt a reorganization plan that would have put Blankenstein in charge of a division that investigated racial discrimination cases.
“I recognize that this is not the result that some of you may have wanted,” Mulvaney wrote in his e-mail. “But I stand by my decision and will proceed accordingly.”
Blankenstein issued his own statement to his CFPB colleagues in which he expressed regret for the blog posting, which included a consideration on the racist resonance connected to the n-word. However, Patrice Ficklin, Director of the Fair Lending Office, and both the President of the National Treasury Employees Union and the head of its CFPB chapter also called on Mulvaney to fire Blankenstein and end the planned organizational changes. But the Acting Director rejected that call.
“I hope everyone understands that this is a unique circumstance from a management perspective and that this matter needs to be handled with the utmost professionalism,” Mulvaney said in the e-mail.