YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Native Ohioan Richard Cordray announced that he is stepping down from his position as director of a consumer watchdog bureau in Washington, D.C., and many are speculating that he did it to prepare to enter the Ohio governor’s race.
YSU political expert Dr. Paul Sracic said Cordray’s days at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) were numbered once President Trump took office. Republicans found the independent regulatory agency created under Obama to be too powerful.
The question was whether Cordray would resign from the CFPB or if Trump would kick him out. An Ohio Gubernatorial run as a Democrat was always in Cordray’s back pocket.
“He had to leave. I mean, if he was going to run, he was running out of time. He held out probably as long as he could. Even now, it is late to start fundraising,” Sracic said.
Sracic says Cordray is a familiar name to Ohioans. If he decides to run, his previous stints as attorney general and treasurer will propel him to the top of the pack.
“It really does shake up the race. Let’s be clear. He arguably becomes the frontrunner on day one,” Sracic said.
Ohio State Democratic Senator Joe Schiavoni announced his run for governor months ago, but he says he’s not worried if Cordray decides to jump in.
“For me, Cordray represents the same old recycled Democratic politician. I think people want somebody different. They want somebody real. They want somebody new,” Schiavoni said.
If Cordray wants to run, Schiavoni says he needs to speak up, and fast.