Sen. Joe Manchin Opposes Sarah Bloom Raskin’s Fed Nominee

Sen. Joe Manchin has stated that he opposes Sarah Bloom Raskin’s nomination for a key regulatory position at the Federal Reserve, putting her nomination in jeopardy in the Senate’s partisan divide. Manchin, D-W.Va., says he wants the Fed to focus on the most critical issues, such as growing inflation and energy costs, and he doesn’t believe Raskin shares those priorities.

After advocating that financial authorities should pay greater attention to the dangers linked with climate change, Raskin, a former member of the Fed’s governing board who previously served in the Treasury Department, has ignited fierce Republican resistance.

Manchin stated in a statement that “her past public pronouncements have failed to sufficiently answer my concerns about the essential significance of financing an all-of-the-above energy policy to satisfy our nation’s critical energy requirements.” Biden has nominated five people to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, including Raskin. Republicans in the Senate Banking Committee boycotted a vote on Rankin’s nomination, so it was already in jeopardy.

Biden nominated Raskin together with four other Fed nominees: Jerome Powell for a second term as chair, Lael Brainard for vice chair, and Lisa Cook and Philip Jefferson for board positions.

All five Fed nominees have been stymied by Republicans’ procedural barrier. Republicans on the committee, lead by Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey, have stated that they are willing to vote on the other nominations but not on Raskin. Raskin’s candidacy, however, has been lumped in with the other four Fed nominees by committee chairman Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio.

Raskin’s nomination is being pursued by the Biden administration.

Chris Meagher, a spokesman for the White House, said, “We’re attempting to line up the bipartisan support she deserves.” Raskin is “one of the most competent people to have ever been nominated for the Federal Reserve Board of Governors,” according to Meagher, who also claims that she is the target of a “baseless campaign organised by oil and gas interests.”

The nomination of Raskin has been a source of controversy.

Raskin was nominated by Biden to be the Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve’s Supervision Committee, which oversees bank supervision. Opponents believe that Raskin’s views on climate change will deter banks from lending to fossil fuel corporations, despite the fact that Raskin stated during her confirmation hearing that banks, not the Federal Reserve, make the decisions about which loans to issue.

Raskin’s efforts on behalf of Reserve Trust, a Colorado fintech firm where she served on the board, has also garnered criticism. Republicans on the committee have questioned whether Raskin unlawfully leveraged her ties at the central bank to gain Reserve Trust a coveted Fed master account, allowing the company access to the central bank’s payment system.

Raskin and the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank, which approved the account, have both denied any wrongdoing. Raskin is married to Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., who was a key figure in former President Donald Trump’s second impeachment.

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