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With Summers Departure, Liberals Push Yellen for Fed Chair

Image: With Summers Departure, Liberals Push Yellen for Fed Chair

By    |   Monday, 16 Sep 2013 06:35 AM

Now that Larry Summers, President Obama’s former economic adviser, has removed himself from consideration for the nomination as head of the Federal Reserve, progressive groups are going to do all they can to make sure Janet Yellen gets the nod, Politico reports.

The current Fed vice chairwoman has long been the favored candidate of left-leaning groups to replace Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, whose term ends in Jan. 31.

If confirmed, Yellen would be the first female to head the Federal Reserve.

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Her supporters also say she would make a concerted effort to push for policies to help the poor and middle class.

Progressive groups were readying to lobby the Senate Banking Committee this week to reject Summers and support Yellen and now, those efforts will go into overdrive.

“The confirmation hearings would’ve been a nightmare for Summers, but now we turn for Yellen,” said Robert Borosage, president of the left-leaning Institute for America’s Future.

“Progressives have to be pleased because this is a result of the leadership in the Senate from” Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio), Jeff Merkley D-Ore., and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who were all expected to oppose Summers if he was nominated.

Many progressives were turned off by Summers’ deregulation policies during the late 1990s, which they believe contributed to the 2008 financial meltdown and took issue with controversial remarks he made as president of Harvard University in 2005 about women’s aptitude for math and science, which contributed to his 2006 resignation.

“It allowed for a real debate about the policies that drove us off the cliff — several of which were done in the Clinton administration, and how we bailed out the banks during the Obama administration,” Borosage said.

“There’s a wing of the Democratic Party that is now prepared to fight on these issues going forward.”

National Organization for Women President Terry O’Neill said that “Larry Summers did the right thing in withdrawing and it clears the way for Janet Yellen.”

“For many, it was just anti-Summers, but for me the issue was really there’s a glass ceiling.

What I saw happening was the better-qualified woman being passed over for a less-qualified man.

Women have seen that happen over and over again where a better-qualified woman is passed over by a less-qualified man who is friends with the employer.”

O’Neill is committed to putting all her energy into making sure Yellin heads up the Fed.

“I’m not stopping until Obama shatters that glass ceiling over her head.”

One Democratic strategist put it this way: “If Obama did nominate someone else who happened to be a man — I think he would catch holy hell.”

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Now that Larry Summers, President Obama's former economic adviser, has removed himself from consideration for the nomination as head of the Federal Reserve, progressive groups are going to do all they can to make sure Janet Yellen gets the nod, Politico reports. The current...
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