Sarah Bloom Raskin was selected by President Joe Biden to fill a seat on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors. Last January, Biden announced his decision to appoint Raskin as Vice Chair for Supervision of the Federal Reserve. At that time, Biden described Raskin as “among the most qualified nominees ever for the position of Vice-Chair for Supervision.”
At that time, the decision to pick Raskin raised questions due to her activist past in regards to climate policy.
“I have serious concerns that she would abuse the Fed’s narrow statutory mandates on monetary policy and banking supervision to have the central bank actively engaged in capital allocation,” stated Senator Patrick Toomey to the Washington Post. Toomey, the ranking Republican on the Senate Banking Committee, was concerned that Raskin would use her position to roam beyond the Fed’s stated mission.
Today it appears that Raskin’s appointment may be doomed as Senator Joe Manchin has stated he would not support her nomination.
In a Tweet, Senator Manchin said he could not support Raskin because of her apparent unwillingness to address the “all of the above” energy policy to meet the country’s vital energy needs. Manchin stated that the Federal Reserve is not an institution that should “politicize its critical decisions.”
Sarah Bloom Raskin's previous public statements have failed to satisfactorily address my concerns about the critical importance of financing an all-of-the-above energy policy to meet our nation’s critical energy needs. I'm unable to support her nomination to @federalreserve Board pic.twitter.com/0tDVXtRpKc
— Senator Joe Manchin (@Sen_JoeManchin) March 14, 2022
Nick Timiraos of WSJ.com, pointed out that Raskin had wanted to single out and block the oil and gas industry from receiving emergency loans during the pandemic.
Manchin’s stated opposition stems from Raskin’s critique of the Fed’s emergency lending programs in April 2020, when she said the central bank should have denied access to a specific sub-sector to improve climate resilience https://t.co/00P3k8e16d
— Nick Timiraos (@NickTimiraos) March 14, 2022
This is not the first key Biden nomination that was sunk due to perceived extremism in the selection. Late last year, Saul Omorava‘s selection as Comptroller of the Currency was pulled as both Democrats and Republicans indicated they could not support her “radical” views – that Toomey described as being socialist.
The Biden Administration ran as a centrist candidate but many moderate Democrats, as well as most all Republicans, have felt deceived by its shift to more extreme policies. The question now is will Biden move more to the middle and select nominees that will garner sufficient Senate support when the seats are evenly divided.