Remember about a year and a half ago, when President Obama appointed a former federal prosecutor to head the SEC with the promise that she’d be, pound for pound, the toughest regulator D.C. had ever seen?

Well, she’s been tough, alright: tough to deal with. Her fellow Democrats on the commission hate her, her fellow regulators hate her, Congressional Democrats hate her (and Republican ones aren’t interested in giving her any more money), consumer groups hate her, and the White House isn’t thrilled, either.

And what does she have to show for all of the alienation? Well, a great deal of alienation.

I’ve been talking to fellow regulators, administration officials, current and former S.E.C. staff members, financial reform advocates and people on Capitol Hill whose opinions of Ms. White’s performance range from dissatisfied to infuriated….

The chairwoman has made some unnecessary foes while her agency has bungled several significant rules….

“When the chair doesn’t have a strong policy background, she is extremely dependent on her staff,” said Barbara Roper, the director of investor protection at the Consumer Federation of America. “Is there anyone on the staff in a high position in leadership, a single person to point to who has reform credentials, who isn’t someone from the industry?”

Once Powerful, Mary Jo White’s S.E.C. Is Seen as Sluggish and Ineffective [DealBook]

16 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (16)

  1. Posted by CLO-Guy | August 14, 2014 at 3:54 PM

    Does no one remember Matt Taibbi's prophetic article about her? Yet another Obama failure.

  2. Posted by yoghurt | August 14, 2014 at 4:06 PM

    I don;t understand the insistence on someone from "outside the industry" for the role. Would you want the head of the american medical association to be someone other than a doctor?

  3. Posted by cmon | August 14, 2014 at 4:08 PM

    oh and " Michael Lewis’s book “Flash Boys” was excellent"? Seriously?

  4. Posted by k8ofthelake | August 14, 2014 at 4:10 PM

    I agree with CLO and yoghurt…does no one in DC ever learn from their mistakes or look at things from a common sense approach? Makes one wonder, what the heck!?

  5. Posted by Guest | August 14, 2014 at 4:57 PM

    Most of the senior leadership isn't. CEO is, but not many others:…?

  6. Posted by Guest | August 14, 2014 at 5:33 PM

    Odds all these posts are the same person?

  7. Posted by Not fair | August 14, 2014 at 7:04 PM

    Doctors are the most unethical, money-driven bastards right after lawyers. Anything but a doctor would be better for head of the american medical association.

  8. Posted by CLO-Guy | August 15, 2014 at 8:39 AM

    I mention Matt Taibbi and you retort with Michael Lewis? … um… Seriously?
    Do I really have to defend against that?
    (Not to mention the fact that Taibbi would *shred* Lewis in a cage match).

  9. Posted by el guesto | August 15, 2014 at 8:46 AM

    if you could guaranty both died, i'd pay to watch that

  10. Posted by CLO-Guy | August 15, 2014 at 9:22 AM

    Ha! Matt's a good guy. Gets the joke.

  11. Posted by guest | August 15, 2014 at 10:51 AM


  12. Posted by guest | August 15, 2014 at 10:52 AM

    I agree with the guy above me^

  13. Posted by everyoneatwork | August 15, 2014 at 12:20 PM

    I'll have one humourous mood lifter to go, please.

  14. Posted by suboptimalbarry | August 15, 2014 at 3:34 PM

    at the end of the day, getting the joke has jumped the shark

  15. Posted by Guest | August 15, 2014 at 8:34 PM

    Taibbi is an ill-informed and self-righteous blowhard. Doing the opposite of what he suggests is typically a good idea, so if he didn't like Mary Jo White then she is just the exception who proves that rule.

  16. Posted by CLO-Guy | August 18, 2014 at 12:46 PM

    Good point.
    I wonder when jumping the shark has jumped the shark…