President Barack Obama is not anti-business, says presidential adviser and former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker.
The president was accused of beating up on businesses in a town hall meeting aired on CNBC recently, pretty much at the same time as the departure of his key economic advisor Larry Summers.
“He is not a wild-eyed leftist radical. It’s ridiculous,” Volcker, who was chairman of the Federal Reserve Board from 1979 to 1987, tells Fox News.
“Since he has been in office he has been a defender of open markets.”
Republicans want Obama to pick a business leader to replace Summers, the director of the National Economic Council.
The administration needs someone who has a “good understanding of what it takes to create private-sector jobs,” Senator Lamar Alexander, chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, tells Reuters.
“One of the real problems with this administration — it seems like they don't know how. And they don't have very many people who've ever tried.”
Possible candidates include female business executives, including former Xerox chief executive Anne Mulcahy, former Clinton administration economist Laura Tyson and NEC deputy director Diana Farrell, according to Reuters.
The Obama administration says a decision is still months away.
“Whether it's a businessperson or an economist or a policy person or that, I don't know. The president should pick whoever he's comfortable with,” Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, tells Reuters.
Summers is due to step down by the end of this year and return to Harvard University.
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