Why Hasn’t Biden Fired These Three Terrible Trump Holdovers?@POTUS @vp @SenatorDurbin @SenSchumer @SpeakerPelosi

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Last summer, the Supreme Court’s conservatives handed down a 5–4 decision against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that was hailed as a conservative victory. In retrospect, it was also a huge gift to Joe Biden.
The court’s decision gave Biden unquestioned authority to oust Trump’s corrupt CFPB director, which he did on Day One. It also pretty clearly gives him the power to fire three other
Trump holdovers leading federal agencies—Mark Calabria, Andrew Saul, and David Black—who will continue to pursue the former president’s policies if allowed to remain in office. Curiously, Biden has not yet sacked either official.
His restraint will allow both men to undermine his agenda from within the executive branch—exactly what the Supreme Court gave him the tools to prevent. Biden should remove these three officials immediately.
Unlike the CFPB, most independent agencies are run by a multi-member board, which gives the president greater control over their leadership. Indeed, there are only two other regulatory agencies led by a single director who was previously shielded from termination by the president
: The Social Security Administration, which runs the biggest government program in the country, and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which regulates the mortgage market.
These job protections, though, are no longer enforceable. In his opinion for the court in Seila Law, Chief Justice John Roberts indicated that his reasoning doomed the independence of these agencies’ directors. Roberts described the SSA’s single-director structure as
“comparatively recent and controversial,” noting that it was established in 1994 and that President Bill Clinton “questioned [its] constitutionality,” even inviting Congress to issue a “corrective amendment.”
The chief justice also cast side-eye on the FHFA, describing it as “essentially a companion of the CFPB,” whose “single-Director structure is a source of ongoing controversy.” He pointed out that the agency’s structure “was recently held unconstitutional”
That precedent plainly gives Biden the ability to terminate Calabria, the FHFA director, and Saul, the SSA commissioner, on Jan. 20—just as he ousted Kathleen Kraninger, Trump’s CFPB director.
Start with Calabria, who was confirmed in 2019 to a term set to end in 2024. His agency, the FHFA, regulates the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as 11 government-sponsored banks. He formerly served as chief economist for former Vice President Mike Pence
Calabria’s chief goal has been to end the government’s conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which allows his agency to manage both companies. By privatizing them, he would disrupt the housing-finance system, substantially raise the cost of mortgages
Under Calabria’s leadership, Freddie Mac also provided a huge loan to the Kushner Companies on unusually favorable terms. ❗(Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, ran the Kushner Companies before Trump’s presidency, and retained almost all of his interest ‼
If the Kushner Companies default, taxpayers may wind up footing the bill.❗ (The agency denied any wrongdoing.) This act alone should be reason enough to get rid of Calabria straightaway.‼❗
Turn next to ❗Andrew Saul, commissioner of the Social Security Administration, as well as his deputy commissioner, David Black. ❗❗Trump appointed both men in 2019 to terms that won’t end until 2025. ‼Their rein over the agency has been nothing short of catastrophic.
Saul previously served on the board of the ❗Manhattan Institute, a conservative group that advocates for severe cuts to Social Security❗. Together, Saul and Black have launched an all-out war against the agency’s nearly 60,000 employees, attempting to sabotage its union‼
They abolished the agency’s ❗innovative telework program, which had dramatically increased efficiency, and forced employees to work in-person even as 😡the pandemic surged last spring. At the end of 2020, ‼the SSA’s staff overwhelmingly voted no confidence in Saul or Black.
😡Trump’s men at the SSA haven’t just targeted their own employees they’ve also made it more difficult for qualified Americans to receive Social Security benefits. ‼❗
‼Currently, Americans who wish to claim disability benefits are guaranteed a hearing before an administrative law judge—an independent arbiter who cannot be pressured by the government to rule against claimants.
‼Saul and Black want to let “attorney advisors,” who answer to the agency’s political appointees, hear disability cases instead. ‼These “attorney advisors” have no guaranteed independence and, unlike administrative law judges, receive annual bonuses
This unprecedented move, which may well be illegal‼, would effectively deny due process to people who have a right to these benefits by allowing political appointees ‼to manipulate the adjudication of claims. It is past time for Biden to fire both of these officials.
Seila Law obviously spelled doom for each man’s job protections, SCOTUS has not yet applied its decision to their agencies.
That leaves Saul and Black. On his second day in office, Biden put Saul on a list of “acting” agency officials who will soon be replaced by Senate-confirmed appointees.
This designation is puzzling, because Saul is not “acting” as SSA commissioner, but serving a term that expires in 2025. The decision suggests that Biden views Saul as “acting” because he intends to replace him with a progressive in the near future.
It’s safe to assume that Biden would simultaneously replace Black, who has consistently supported Saul’s destructive policies.😡
Progressives in the new administration may hesitate to wield Seila Law against Trump holdovers. ❗ Roberts’ opinion in Seila Law transformed the very nature of the presidency, whether Biden likes it or not‼
The chief justice’s watchword was ❗“accountability”: Executive officials must be accountable to the president, he wrote, for the president, in turn, is accountable to the people. ‼
The people elected Biden on a liberal platform that leaves no room for reckless deregulation, devastating assaults on unions, or cuts to crucial government benefits. ‼‼If he refuses to fire officials implementing these policies, he will bear the blame in the public eye. ❗

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