Just over a week ahead of Ohio’s first gubernatorial debate, TBP Muckraker has learned that Richard Cordray may have an additional scandal lurking in his background that Ohio media and even the DeWine campaign are unaware of.
During Cordray’s tenure as chief of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the agency allegedly developed a #metoo problem.
Specifically, under Cordray’s leadership, a former CFPB employee-turned-whistleblower says the agency employed senior male staff who were the subject of #metoo claims, the details of which could prove “devastating” to Cordray and the agency’s reputation if made public.
The male staff in question are allegedly a group of current and former managers. Most are believed to have departed the agency, but some may still be employed there.
At present the details of any sexual harassment and/or abuse claims are not known.
However, an opposition research firm in Washington, D.C., has submitted a Freedom of Information Act request for documents relating to any claims in order to uncover more specifics.
It is unclear whether a FOIA request will turn up full details of whatever occurred at CFPB, since personnel privacy issues may be at play and any settlements with affected CFPB staff may have confidentiality provisions that prevent details of underlying claims from being disclosed.
However, redacted records may be possible to obtain. That would provide greater insight into what is alleged to have occurred at CFPB on Cordray’s watch without the names of either accusers or accused employees being disclosed.
It is worth noting that quite apart from alleged #metoo problems, Cordray reportedly oversaw a “toxic and retaliatory” workplace at CFPB, where an “unprecedented number of complaints” involving “discrimination against women, blacks, older workers, immigrants and gays” were filed.
According to the Ohio Star, “more that 200 complaints were filed between August 2013 and March 2014, with many of the employees describing the abuses as widespread.”
The bottom line appears to be that with less than 60 days left until the election, far more scrutiny of Cordray’s record by the De Wine campaign, the Republican Governors Association, and Ohio media is needed.
Cordray has positioned as an advocate of women’s rights and women’s advancement, LGBT and minority rights and advancement, but his record at CFPB appears to tell a very different story—one that is very relevant to the job he is de facto applying for right now.