Aug 30, 2021 - Economy & Business

AOC, Tlaib and Pressley urge Biden to replace Fed chair Powell

Photo of Jerome Powell sitting at a table before a mic
Jerome Powell, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) are calling on President Biden to replace Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell with someone more focused on "eliminating climate risk and advancing racial and economic justice," according to a joint statement reported by Politico.

Driving the news: Powell's term will end in early 2022, though some economists have said Biden will likely reappoint him.

What they're saying: Though the progressive lawmakers recognized that the Fed has "made positive changes" under Powell, they pushed Biden to appoint someone more aggressive on financial regulation and climate change.

  • "Under his leadership, the Federal Reserve has taken very little action to mitigate the risk climate change poses to our financial system," the lawmakers, who all serve on the House Financial Services Committee, said in the statement.
  • "At a time when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is warning of the potential catastrophic and irreversible damage inflicted by a changing climate, we need a leader at the helm that will take bold and decisive action to eliminate climate risk," they added.
  • The statement criticized the Fed's decision to reduce regulations on big banks under Powell. "To move forward with a whole of government approach that eliminates climate risk while making our financial system safer, we need a Chair who is committed to these objectives."
  • Reps. Chuy García (D-Ill.) and Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) also signed on.

Worth noting: Few Democratic lawmakers have publicly opposed Powell, but some including Sens. Sherrod Brown (Ohio) and Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) have similarly called him out on his deregulatory efforts, Politico noted.

Go deeper: The growing push for a green Fed

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