Salem Radio Network News Sunday, May 29, 2022

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U.S. Senate confirms Cook as Fed’s first Black woman governor

By David Morgan

(Reuters) -Lisa Cook, an economics professor at Michigan State University, on Tuesday won U.S. Senate confirmation as the first Black woman to serve on the Federal Reserve Board in its 109-year history.

Cook will join the U.S. central bank as it ratchets up borrowing costs to rein in 40-year-high inflation that is straining household budgets, raising corporate costs, and sapping U.S. President Joe Biden’s approval ratings.

Calling Cook’s confirmation “historic,” Senate Banking Committee Chair Sherrod Brown said Cook will bring an “invaluable perspective” to her role.

The committee’s top Republican, Patrick Toomey, said he feared she would not be tough enough on inflation. Not a single Republican supported her.

Vice President Kamala Harris cast a tie-breaking vote in the evenly divided Senate, making the final tally 51-50.

Fed policymakers began raising interest rates in March and last week delivered the first in what is expected to be a series of half-point rate hikes, double the usual size, as they try to slow supercharged demand for both goods and labor.

Two other nominees to the Fed – Jerome Powell, renominated to his current position as the central bank’s chair, and Davidson College dean of faculty Philip Jefferson, nominated to a vacant seat on the Board – have bipartisan support but it is uncertain when the Senate will take up their confirmations.

(Reporting by David Morgan and Ann Saphir; Editing by Sandra Maler and Chris Reese)

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