Mick Mulvaney, the Acting Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), is continuing to push back against complaints from within his agency regarding an official who was revealed to be the author of anonymous blog postings in 2004 that many considered to be racially insensitive.
The Hill received an internal memo from Mulvaney
to his staff did not specifically refer to Eric Blankenstein, the CFPB’s Policy Director of Supervision, Enforcement and Fair Lending, whose 14-year-old blogging incited calls for his firing from 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. However, he cited “recent articles in the media” and added that while racial discrimination within the CFPB was unacceptable, he said bureau staffers “can be certain that I value your right to express personal views on your own time” and “the healthy exchange of diverse opinions.”
Mulvaney also called for the CFPB workforce to treat each other with “professionalism, respect and civility” and focus on the agency’s goals.
“We do our work together, and we are either going to choose to do it very well, or we won’t,” Mulvaney wrote. “That is a choice we make together. Our focus must always remain on doing our jobs, enforcing the law and working together to do a great job for the American people.”
Last week, Blankenstein issued his own statement
to his CFPB colleagues in which he expressed regret for the blog posting, which questioned the veracity of hate crime reporting and included a consideration on the racist resonance connected to the n-word.