Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on Wednesday announced another 0.25% hike in the interest rate as part of an effort to bring down inflation, though some critics say the move could exacerbate an ongoing banking crisis.
For her part, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has long been opposed to Powell’s strategy and reiterated her position during a CNN interview this week. Anchor Jake Tapper began the conversation by asking if she had shared her concerns with President Joe Biden.
“So, I’m not going to talk about private conversations, but what I will say is I made it very clear as publicly as possible that I didn’t think that he should be reconfirmed as chair of the Fed,” Warren said. “And I think he’s doing a really terrible job.”
‘Trying to Get Two Million People Laid Off’ – Elizabeth Warren Calls for Jerome Powell’s Ouster for Trying to Cause a Recession pic.twitter.com/ZjBgIDuSSt
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As for the impact, she believes the rate increases will have on the economy, she said that “Jerome Powell is trying to drive it” into a recession.
“What he’s trying to do is get two million people laid off,” the Massachusetts Democrat said. “And one of the things that we need to understand, he wants to raise the unemployment rate by more than a point within a single 12-month period. We have done that before in this country. In fact, we have done it 12 times before. And out of all 12 times. How many times has it resulted in a recession? The answer is 12.”
Warren concluded that Powell’s approach “is a danger to our economy,” reiterating her prior assessment that “he is a dangerous man to have in this job.”
Powell, a Republican, was nominated by then-President Donald Trump in 2017 and renominated by Biden in 2021, achieving bipartisan support each time.
“Now, some will no doubt question why I am renominating Jay when he was a choice of a Republican predecessor,” Biden said upon announcing his choice. “Why am I not picking a Democrat? Why am I not picking fresh blood or taking the Fed in a different direction? Put directly, at this moment of both enormous potential and enormous uncertainty for our economy, we need stability and independence at the Federal Reserve.”
Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Chairman Sherrod Brown (D-OH) was among the Democrats who supported the renomination, explaining: “Chair Jerome Powell has led our economy through a historic pandemic, and under his and President Biden’s leadership, unemployment has fallen and workers are seeing increased bargaining power. I look forward to working with Powell to stand up to Wall Street and stand up for workers so that they share in the prosperity they create.”