WASHINGTON — The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced Monday that Brian Johnson, a senior adviser to acting Director Mick Mulvaney, will fill the agency's second leadership post.

Johnson will become the acting deputy director, succeeding Leandra English, who recently said she plans to resign from the CFPB. English had been embroiled in a legal battle with Mulvaney, claiming that she was the rightful acting head of the bureau.

Johnson, who currently serves as principal policy director at the CFPB, was brought to the agency by Mulvaney after a dozen years at the House Financial Services Committee, most recently as senior counsel.

Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney
A key adviser to acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney was chosen as the agency's No. 2. Bloomberg News

“Brian Johnson is the first person I hired at the Bureau and has been an indispensable advisor,” Mulvaney said. “Brian knows the Bureau like the back of his hand. He approaches his role as a public servant with humility and unsurpassed dedication. His steady character, work ethic, and commitment to free markets and consumer choice make him exactly what our country needs at this agency.”

At the House Financial Services Committee, Johnson conducted oversight of the CFPB, subpoenaed documents and wrote reports critical of the agency.

He was the House committee's policy director when GOP lawmakers accused former CFPB Director Richard Cordray of violating the Hatch Act, which bars certain federal employees from taking actions related to running for political office. The U.S. Office of Special Counsel in October said there was no evidence of a violation. Cordray left the CFPB to run for governor of Ohio.

House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, applauded the appointment.

“Brian’s deep understanding of the law and the Bureau’s structure was an invaluable asset to me during his time at the Financial Services Committee,” Hensarling said in a press release. “There is no one who understands the Bureau more or who is more committed to ensuring the Bureau lives up to its mission of truly protecting consumer access to financial choice and freedom.”

Before joining the House committee, Johnson was an Ohio assistant attorney general, and a law clerk and staff assistant in the George W. Bush administration. He spent two years as a legislative correspondent for Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., after graduating from law school at the University of Virginia.

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