Senate advances Fischer's nom as No. 2 at Federal Reserve

The Senate voted 56-38 to end debate on the nomination of Stanley Fischer to serve as vice chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

If confirmed, Fischer will serve as Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s No. 2 on the board.

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Last month, the Senate voted 68-27 to place Fischer on the board, but because of some Republican objection, the Senate has to hold a second vote to appoint him as vice chairman.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said he would block all Federal Reserve Board nominees until the Senate voted on S. 209, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act.

“The American people have a right to know what this institution is doing with the nation's money supply,” Paul said ahead of the vote. “The Federal Reserve does not need prolonged secrecy — it needs to be audited, and my bipartisan Federal Reserve Transparency Act will do just that.”

Obama chose Fischer, who has served in top roles at the International Monetary Fund and the Bank of Israel, to take over for Yellen, who has taken the reins of the central bank when Chairman Ben Bernanke left. 

When Obama nominated Fischer at the beginning of the year, he said Fischer "brings decades of leadership and expertise" and "he is widely acknowledged as one of the world’s leading and most experienced economic policy minds."

The president said he is confident that Fischer and Yellen would “make a great team.”

On Tuesday, the Senate also ended debate two other nominees to serve as members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

Lael Brainard was advanced on a 59-35 vote and Jerome Powell on a 58-36 vote.

Final confirmation on all three is expected Thursday afternoon.

— Vicki Needham contributed to this article.