Trump defends decision to appoint consumer bureau chief
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President Trump on Saturday defended his decision to appoint an acting director for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) despite the outgoing head naming a temporary successor, calling the agency a "total disaster" under officials from the Obama administration.

"The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB, has been a total disaster as run by the previous Administrations pick," Trump tweeted. "Financial Institutions have been devastated and unable to properly serve the public. We will bring it back to life!"

Trump appointed White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney on Friday to head the bureau just hours prior to the resignation of former director Richard Cordray. The move superseded Corday's hand-selected pick for a temporary successor, Deputy Director Leandra English.

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White House officials have called the decision "a typical, routine move" despite criticism from Democrats who have questioned Trump's authority to appoint someone to the independent consumer watchdog.

Senior White House officials insisted Saturday that Trump is legally allowed under the Federal Vacancies Act to appoint an acting director.

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenTrump trade deal likely to sow division in Democratic presidential field Buttigieg says he doubts consulting work for insurer led to layoffs Trump supporters at Pa. rally 'upset' after Democrats introduce impeachment articles MORE (D-Mass.) cited the Dodd-Frank Act, which authorized the agency's creation, in saying that Trump could only nominate a permanent successor to lead the agency, and that English was the rightful temporary director. 

The act mandates that the deputy director serves as the acting director of the bureau until the Senate votes to confirm a replacement. 

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) said that Mulvaney has "worked to destroy" the CFPB, citing the bill's he had sponsored to eliminate it while serving as a congressman, and said he was an "unacceptable candidate" to lead it. 

Waters and other opponents have pointed out that Mulvaney would be leading both the OMB and the CFPB simultaneously, claiming his position would give the Trump administration improper influence over the independent agency.