Although Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke is thought to have enough backers to easily pass the Senate confirmation vote, recent reports suggest that support may be eroding, even among liberal Democrats.
Last week, media reported that prominent Senators Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.) and Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) confirmed they would not cast their vote for Bernanke, who was nominated for the second term by President Obama last summer.
Boxer stated that her reservations were due to Bernanke’s "lead role in crafting the Bush administration’s economic policies, which led to the current economic crisis." Feingold added that the financial excesses of recent years, including predatory mortgage lending, happened on the current chairman’s watch.
However, this morning a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.)said the House’s top Democrat hoped to hold the confirmation vote this week, according to Benzinga.com, a financial information website.
In addition, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) predicted that Bernanke will have bipartisan support, although he declined to say whether he would vote in favor.
Uncertainty over Bernanke’s confirmation unnerved investors last week and helped contribute to the worst three-day slide for U.S. stocks since last March.
The chairman’s term ends on Jan. 31.