Biden Nominates Michael Barr For Top Fed Banking Regulator Job

Biden Nominates Michael Barr For Top Fed Banking Regulator Job

Exactly one month to the day after Sarah Bloom Raskin withdrew her nomination (after her chances were nuked by Sen. Joe Manchin over her radical views on energy policy, and other issues), President Biden has finally put forward another nominee for the all-important position of vice chair of supervision – the top banking regulator on the Fed’s board of governors tasked with overseeing the country’s largest and most important financial institutions.

Confirming earlier speculation, President Biden confirmed in a statement that Michael Barr, a former Treasury Department official, would be his new pick for the job.

President Biden, in a statement: “Today, I am announcing my intent to nominate Michael Barr as the next Vice Chair for Supervision of the Federal Reserve.”

— David Gura (@davidgura) April 15, 2022

Here’s more of that statement courtesy of WSJ:

“Michael brings the expertise and experience necessary for this important position at a critical time for our economy and families across the country,” Mr. Biden said in a statement. Mr. Barr, the president added, “understands that this job is not a partisan one, but one that plays a critical role in regulating our nation’s financial institutions to ensure Americans are treated fairly and to protect the stability of our economy.”

Barr’s nomination already has the support of Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sherrod Brown.

Sen. Sherrod Brown, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, which will oversee the nomination, said he would support Mr. Barr. “At a time when working families are dealing with rising prices while corporate profits continue to soar, this job is vital to ensuring the economy works for everyone,” Mr. Brown said in a statement. “Michael Barr understands the importance of this role at this critical time in our economic recovery.”

Biden added that he would work with the Senate Banking Committee to move the nomination forward quickly, and he encouraged the Senate to confirm his other nominees to the Fed. A vote on those other nominees, including Jerome Powell’s nomination for a second term as the Fed’s chairman, is expected later this month.

Barr was assistant treasury secretary for financial institutions during the Obama administration, and as a result he helped craft the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, a broad overhaul of financial regulations that followed the 2007-09 financial crisis. He previously served in multiple roles during the Clinton administration, including special assistant to then-Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin and deputy assistant Treasury secretary.

He presently serves as dean of the University of Michigan’s public policy school.

While Barr doesn’t have the same radical reputation as Raskin, there have been reports that Republicans are already taking steps to sink his nomination before it has even been formally proposed (Republicans oppose him because of his involvement with creating the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau). He has also faced opposition from some “outside progressive groups”.

Potential Fed nominee Michael Barr may not be an easy win for the WH either.

GOP aide points out that he helped write Dodd-Frank, which created the “lawless and unaccountable” CFPB.

“I think his nomination will run into trouble with many Senate Republicans,” aide says.

— Ylan Q. Mui (@ylanmui) April 12, 2022

For example, the Revolving Door Project pointed out in a press release that Barr has been an unabashed supporter of bailouts, both during the financial crisis, and in the future. They also accused him of being “too close to fintech and cryptocurrency schemers”.

With that in mind, it looks like the White House is gearing up for another brutal confirmation battle that may not ultimately succeed.

Tyler Durden
Fri, 04/15/2022 – 09:00

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