On Thursday, the Senate voted to confirm Ben Bernanke for a second four-year term as Federal Reserve chairman, ending speculation from both sides of the aisle that his nomination was in jeopardy. The Senate voted 70-30 to reappoint Bernanke, the closest vote ever for a nominee for the position.
Over the past two years, Democrats and Republicans alike have criticized the Fed hairman for not recognizing the signs of the impending economic crisis of 2008 and for failing to prevent the housing bubble from bursting.
"Chairman Bernanke was asleep at the switch while Wall Street became the largest gambling casino in the history of the world and hurtled into insolvency," said Senator Bernard Sanders (I-VT.), quoted by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. "His failure to adequately regulate financial institutions should not be rewarded with a reappointment."
Supporters of Bernanke argued that the way he handled the economic crisis is the very reason that he should be confirmed for a second term, Fox News reports.
Meanwhile, Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH.), a proponent of Bernanke’s reappointment, said that President Obama is responsible for much of the ill will directed toward the Fed chairman, stating that he "threw kerosene on the fire [that] unfortunately blew back on his own nominee."