Judge again backs Trump pick to lead consumer finance watchdog

A federal judge on Wednesday sided with the Trump administration for a second time in a fight over the control of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, denying a request for a preliminary injunction filed by an Obama-era official.

Leandra English, the agency’s deputy director, has sought to unseat Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director named by President Donald Trump in November as the agency’s interim chief. She has claimed she is the rightful acting director, having been chosen by former director Richard Cordray, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, as his temporary successor.

Judge Timothy J. Kelly, of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, said Ms. English hasn’t met the standard to obtain a preliminary injunction. “The Court finds that English is not likely to succeed on the merits of her claims, nor is she likely to suffer irreparable harm absent the injunctive relief sought,” the judge wrote in his opinion. “Moreover, the balance of the equities and the public interest also weigh against granting the relief.”

Ms. English’s lawyer, Deepak Gupta, said he and his client were disappointed. “Mr. Mulvaney’s appointment undermines the Bureau’s independence and threatens its mission to protect American consumers,” he said. Mr. Gupta didn’t say what his client’s next move would be.

The judge in November rejected Ms. English’s request to block Mr. Mulvaney’s appointment, leading to her preliminary injunction request.

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