Finance

Romney will oppose Trump Fed nominee who backed gold standard

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Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) said Thursday he will vote against President Trump’s controversial nomination of Judy Shelton to the Federal Reserve Board, impeding her path to confirmation.

“I’m not going to be endorsing Judy’s Shelton’s nomination to the Fed,” Romney, one of Trump’s most vocal GOP critics, told reporters at the Capitol. “I will be voting against her.”

Romney is the first Republican senator to announce his opposition to Shelton, who will also likely be opposed by all 47 members of the Senate Democratic Caucus, so the opposition of three more Republicans would effectively doom her nomination.

Romney, like several GOP senators, had previously expressed concerns about Shelton’s past support for linking the value of the dollar to gold, along with her inconsistent stances on the Fed interest rates. Romney was also one of four Republican senators who publicly opposed Trump’s plan to nominate Herman Cain to the Fed in 2019, blocking his path to the central bank.

Shelton narrowly won the approval of the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, which cleared her for a full Senate confirmation vote by a 13-12 margin. Despite earlier doubts about her viability, Shelton won over three GOP Banking Committee members — Sens. Richard Shelby (Ala.), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and John Kennedy (La.) — who had initially been skeptical of supporting her.

All of the panel’s 12 Democrats voted against Shelton over her unconventional policy stances, her relationship with Trump and her lack of experience with bank regulation. Banking Committee Democrats urged the panel to hold a second hearing on her nomination after an economic crisis irrupted following her February appearance before the committee.

“Her flip-flopping, policy beliefs, and objections to Fed independence worry conservative and liberal economists alike — and as recently as February, it worried some of my Republican colleagues,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (Ohio), the committee’s top Democrat, ahead of Tuesday’s vote.

“Dr. Shelton may not be able to imagine an economic crisis like the one we are in today, but I certainly can imagine how much worse it would be if she were on the Federal Reserve Board right now,” he added.

–Updated 12:51 p.m.

Tags Donald Trump Federal Reserve Board Gold standard Herman Cain John Kennedy Mitt Romney Pat Toomey Richard Shelby Sherrod Brown Trump nominations
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