Warren Calls Fed Chair a 'Dangerous Man'

She tells Jerome Powell she will oppose his renomination
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2021 3:36 PM CDT
Warren Calls Fed Chair a 'Dangerous Man'
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testifies during a Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on the CARES Act on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021 in Washington.   (Kevin Dietsch/Pool via AP)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren addressed what she called the "elephant in the room" at a Senate Banking Committee hearing Tuesday—the question of whether Jerome Powell will be renominated as Federal Reserve chair. The Democrat told Powell that she considers him a "dangerous man" who has weakened the country's banking system and she will oppose his renomination, CNBC reports. Powell was appointed chair by Donald Trump in 2018 but was frequently criticized by the former president. Powell's term is up early next year and it's not clear whether President Biden plans to renominate him.

Powell has received bipartisan praise for his leadership during the pandemic, but progressives have criticized his record on regulation, the Washington Post reports. "Renominating you means gambling that, for the next five years, a Republican majority at the Federal Reserve, with a Republican chair who has regularly voted to deregulate Wall Street, won’t drive this economy over a financial cliff again," Warren told Powell Tuesday, per the New York Times. She accused him of watering down regulation brought in after the 2008 financial crisis—increasing the risk of another financial meltdown.

Powell didn't respond to Warren's remark that she would oppose his renomination, but he said he was willing to revisit regulatory changes made during his time in charge, the Post reports. "I'm prepared to look at anything we did as fair game to look at again," he told the committee. One seat on the Fed's seven-member board is currently vacant and three more openings are expected in the coming months. Powell told Tuesday's hearing that he would welcome more diversity on the board, including the first-ever appointment of a Black woman, reports Reuters. (More Federal Reserve stories.)

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