President Joe Biden on Monday said he will reappoint Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell to remain in his post when Powell’s current term ends in 2022.
Powell is expected to easily win confirmation, according to Politico.
Lael Brainard, currently a governor on the Federal Reserve board, was nominated to serve as vice chair. The New York Times characterized her as the choice of many progressives to replace Powell, who has run afoul of leftists in the Democratic Party.
“I’m confident that Chair Powell and Dr. Brainard’s focus on keeping inflation low, prices stable and delivering full employment will make our economy stronger than ever before,” Biden said in a statement.
America needs steady, independent, and effective leadership at the Federal Reserve. That’s why I will nominate Jerome Powell for a second term as Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and Dr. Lael Brainard to serve as Vice Chair of the Board of Governors.
— President Biden (@POTUS) November 22, 2021
I’m glad Jerome Powell has kept interest rates low throughout his tenure, however his record on regulation, mergers, ethics, and climate mitigation are dismal. We need new leadership at the Fed. I’m with Elizabeth Warren. Let’s kill this nomination. pic.twitter.com/4ckinuqHvB
— Jesse ”Upzone Broward County” Rubens? (@jesserubens) November 22, 2021
Setting up a fight with Elizabeth Warren https://t.co/jHyuUKHnVl
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) November 22, 2021
But one expert said Biden was right to stay with Powell.
“This is a good decision,” former Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher told CNN. “While Lael Brainard is a most capable economist, appointing her under pressure from progressive senators like Elizabeth Warren would have sent a signal that the Fed has been overtly politicized, irreparably damaging its reputation for independence.”
Powell was nominated to the Fed’s Board of Governors by former President Barack Obama and became chair under former President Donald Trump to succeed Janet Yellen, who is now secretary of the treasury.
Senate Banking Committee Chair @SherrodBrown (D) and Ranking Member Pat Toomey (R) quickly release statements endorsing Jerome Powell’s renomination for Fed chair.
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) November 22, 2021
Although the nomination produced bipartisan support, in a statement last week, Democratic Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island and Jeff Merkley of Oregon said Powell was the wrong choice.
“Jerome Powell refuses to recognize climate change as an urgent and systemic economic threat. During his tenure, Chair Powell first ignored climate change and then resisted calls for the Fed to use its tools to fight it, arguing that climate change ‘is really an issue that is assigned to lots of other government agencies, not so much the Fed.’ At a hearing earlier this year, he said: ‘we are not and we don’t seek to be climate policymakers.’”
“Climate is not a long-term challenge for the Fed; it demands action now,” they said. “President Biden must appoint a Fed Chair who will ensure the Fed is fulfilling its mandate to safeguard our financial system and shares the Administration’s view that fighting climate change is the responsibility of every policymaker. That person is not Jerome Powell.”
NEW from @EvergreenAction: After a full term as Fed Chair, Jerome Powell has a ways to go when it comes to tackling the threat climate change poses to our financial system. The Fed has a mandate to protect our economy from climate risk, & Mr. Powell doesn’t have a moment to waste pic.twitter.com/kbGcyDzqVk
— Jamal Raad? (@jamalraad) November 22, 2021
For months, Powell said that the inflation that has rocked America would be transitory, in keeping with the Biden White House’s talking points, but has lately suggested it will remain a major economic issue through 2022.
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