Former policy adviser Saule Omarova, an attorney and scholar, is expected to be nominated by the Biden administration for the position of Comptroller of the Currency. The body regulates and supervises the country’s financial industry. Omarova has previously leveled criticism at both crypto assets and the traditional banking industry, has vowed to rebuild banking as we know it. She described cryptocurrencies as “benefiting primarily the broken financial system we currently have.”
In her current position as a law professor at Cornell University Law School, Omarova is likely to push for stricter crypto laws, since she sees the industry as a danger to economic stability and ripe for exploitation by big private financial institutions. Besides corporate finance, the scholar has a strong background in banking legislation. If she is chosen, Omarova will be the first woman to officially lead the OCC, although a female acting head has previously led the OCC.
The Democrats had considered former Treasury official Michael Barr and law professor Mehrsa Baradaran for the position, but they concluded that neither candidate would get enough support to be confirmed. Still, Omarova is likely to face opposition from the banking industry and the Democrats, who now control a small majority in the Senate to be appointed to the OCC.