Trump wants Moore on Fed despite controversy

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump conversation with foreign leader part of complaint that led to standoff between intel chief, Congress: report Pelosi: Lewandowski should have been held in contempt 'right then and there' Trump to withdraw FEMA chief nominee: report MORE still wants Stephen Moore to have a seat on the Federal Reserve Board despite growing scrutiny of the conservative commentator’s past incendiary comments, a top White House adviser said Monday.

“We’re still behind him,” National Economic Council Director Larry KudlowLawrence (Larry) Alan KudlowMORE told reporters at the White House, adding that Moore is still going through “the process of vetting” and there has been “no change” in Trump’s position.

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White House press secretary Sarah HuckabeeSarah Elizabeth SandersSarah Huckabee Sanders says she is 'relentlessly' attacked by women Sarah Sanders makes debut as Fox News contributor Sarah Sanders to publish book ahead of 2020 election MORE Sanders said earlier Monday that staff was “reviewing” Moore’s comments about women and Midwestern cities but did not say whether he had fallen out of favor.

“Certainly we're reviewing those comments and when we have an update on that front we'll let you know,” Sanders said.

Trump’s plan to nominate Moore to the Fed board has drawn blowback from critics who accuse him of trying to exert control over the politically independent body.

Another loyalist whom the president sought to nominate to the board, former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, withdrew from consideration after allegations of sexual misconduct resurfaced.

Moore has come under criticism for old columns he wrote for National Review, in which he suggested that women should have no role in men’s college sports unless they dress in halter tops.

“Here's the rule change I propose: No more women refs, no women announcers, no women beer vendors, no women anything,” he wrote in March 2002.

Moore said on Sunday on ABC News’ “This Week” that he was “embarrassed” by some of the things he had written but called himself the victim of a “smear campaign” and “character assassination” by people who do not want to see him on the Fed board.

“I'll stand by my record and I'll debate anybody on economics and let's make this about the economy,” he said.

Moore also said he no longer believes that cities like Cleveland and Cincinnati are the “armpits of America,” as he said in a 2014 speech.

“They've become the economic arsenal. Ohio is booming,” he said on ABC. “No, I do not believe Ohio is the armpit anymore.”

Cain withdrew from consideration after four Republican senators said they would not support his nomination, virtually dooming his chances of confirmation. No GOP senators have come out publicly against Moore.