Filed Under: Politics

In about face, Biden to meet with Powell on inflation, economic growth

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President Joe Biden will meet with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell to discuss, among other things, inflation and economic growth. The White House said these two topics would be part of a larger discussion over the state of the U.S. and global economies.

Tuesday’s meeting appears to be an about face from President Biden. Last April, Biden pledged to not interfere with the Fed’s work.

“I think the Federal Reserve is an independent operation,” Biden said. “I want to be real clear that I’m not going to do the kinds of things that had been done in the last administration — either talking to the Attorney General about who he’s going to prosecute or not prosecute and under what circumstances, or the Fed telling them what they should and shouldn’t do.”

Biden reemphasized that pledge in an op-ed posted Monday by The Wall Street Journal. He also suggested he and Powell are aligned on addressing inflation.

“My predecessor demeaned the Fed, and past presidents have sought to influence its decisions inappropriately during periods of elevated inflation,” Biden said in the op-ed. “I won’t do this. I have appointed highly qualified people from both parties to lead that institution. I agree with their assessment that fighting inflation is our top economic challenge right now.”

Tuesday’s meeting on inflation and economic growth will be just the fourth between Biden and Powell. It’s the first since Biden nominated Powell to lead the Fed for a second term back in November. That nomination was approved by a 80-19 vote in the Senate earlier this month.

“Jerome Powell… earned the opportunity to lead the Fed as chair for another term,” Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) said. “Along with now Vice Chair Brainard, he played an instrumental role in stabilizing our economy in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. He’s been a reliable voice and a steady hand through this crisis.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Jimmie Johnson: PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN IS LAUNCHING AN EFFORT TO FOCUS ON THE ECONOMY.
AND IT STARTS TODAY AS HE FINALLY MEETS WITH FEDERAL RESERVE CHAIR JEROME POWELL.
FACING RISING PRICES AND DEEP VOTER DISSATISFACTION, BIDEN’S MEETING COMES OVER A YEAR AFTER HE INITIALLY SAID HE FEARED TALKING TO THE FED WOULD LOOK LIKE HE WAS QUOTE:
“TELLING THEM WHAT THEY SHOULD AND SHOULDN’T DO.”
TUESDAY’S MEETING ALSO COMES JUST WEEKS AFTER POWELL WAS APPROVED FOR A SECOND TERM AS FED CHAIR — FOLLOWING A RARE BIPARTISAN VOTE IN THE SENATE.
Sen. Sherrod Brown | (D) OHIO: “Along with now Vice Chair Brainard, he played an instrumental role in stabilizing our economy in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. He’s been a reliable voice and a steady hand through this crisis.”
Jimmie Johnson: ACCORDING TO THE WHITE HOUSE — THIS IS ALL PART OF A MONTH-LONG PUSH AS INFLATION BECOMES THE TOP CONCERN FOR AMERICANS.
BIDEN ALSO PLANS TO DELIVER A SPEECH AT THE END OF THE WEEK WHEN THE NEW JOBS REPORT IS RELEASED.

President Joe Biden will meet with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell to discuss, among other things, inflation and economic growth. The White House said these two topics would be part of a larger discussion over the state of the U.S. and global economies.

Tuesday’s meeting appears to be an about face from President Biden. Last April, Biden pledged to not interfere with the Fed’s work.

“I think the Federal Reserve is an independent operation,” Biden said. “I want to be real clear that I’m not going to do the kinds of things that had been done in the last administration — either talking to the Attorney General about who he’s going to prosecute or not prosecute and under what circumstances, or the Fed telling them what they should and shouldn’t do.”

Biden reemphasized that pledge in an op-ed posted Monday by The Wall Street Journal. He also suggested he and Powell are aligned on addressing inflation.

“My predecessor demeaned the Fed, and past presidents have sought to influence its decisions inappropriately during periods of elevated inflation,” Biden said in the op-ed. “I won’t do this. I have appointed highly qualified people from both parties to lead that institution. I agree with their assessment that fighting inflation is our top economic challenge right now.”

Tuesday’s meeting on inflation and economic growth will be just the fourth between Biden and Powell. It’s the first since Biden nominated Powell to lead the Fed for a second term back in November. That nomination was approved by a 80-19 vote in the Senate earlier this month.

“Jerome Powell… earned the opportunity to lead the Fed as chair for another term,” Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) said. “Along with now Vice Chair Brainard, he played an instrumental role in stabilizing our economy in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. He’s been a reliable voice and a steady hand through this crisis.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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