Larry Summers Withdraws His Name for Fed Chairman

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J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Lawrence Summers at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in the White House complex, Friday, Dec. 17, 2010, in Washington.

Former U.S. Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers phoned President Barack Obama on Sunday to withdraw his nomination for Federal Reserve chairman.

The Wall Street Journal reports that in a letter to the president following phone call, Summers called his possible confirmation “acrimonious.”

“I have reluctantly concluded that any possible confirmation process for me would be acrimonious and would not serve the interest of the Federal Reserve, the Administration or, ultimately, the interests of the nation’s ongoing economic recovery,” the letter said.

Obama issued a statement accepting the decision, describing Summers as “a critical member of my team as we faced down the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.” The president added, “I will always be grateful to Larry for his tireless work and service on behalf of his country, and I look forward to continuing to seek his guidance and counsel in the future.”

Summers was believed to be the president’s first choice to succeed Ben Bernanke, who plans to step down as Fed chair at the end of his second term on January 31, 2013. Recent revelations about the National Security Agency surveillance, as well as potential military action in Syria complicated the potential nomination. Criticism over Summers’ appointment heightened from the left as well as women’s groups and some Senate Banking Committee Democrats.

“He was very clearly the president’s choice,” a former administration official told the Journal. “After all the problems they had with the base, a big confirmation battle looked like a bridge too far.”

[WSJ]

3 comments
gggg200000
gggg200000

"Often wrong but sure of himself" (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/16/larry-summers-withdrawal-wall-street_n_3931648.html?ir=Politics&ref=topbar) is an apt synopsis of Larry Summers during the Clinton administration. Strangely, the media (and even Obama!) have skipped over Summers' huge blunder concerning regulating subprime mortgage derivative securities (http://www.thewordenreport.blogspot.com/2013/09/larry-summers-bows-out-advise-and.html). For example, Obama wrote, “Larry was a critical member of my team as we faced down the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, and it was in no small part because of his expertise, wisdom and leadership that we wrestled the economy back to growth and made the kind of progress we are seeing today.” (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/16/business/economy/summers-pulls-name-from-consideration-for-fed-chief.html). Was Obama hiding Summers’ faulty and sordid behavior because the economist is "a member of the club" even as Wall Street had had enough of him? Maybe a titan sent him a message: Drop out now! If so, perhaps the bank execs on Wall Street are pulling the strings in Washington even more so than the public supposes. "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!"

HollyKick
HollyKick

Mr president, did you not read the past ..  how did you even think about this crook ?

BingJou
BingJou

We have had too many guys who have close ties with major Wall Street players.  Larry Summers is a major player in banking deregulation during Clinton Administration.  Bernanke kissed up to Greenspan's ass to become the Chairman.  The reform of Wall Street has been getting nowhere.  Bankers and financiers are helping our economy by cutting larger and larger slices of our economic gains and growth only for themselves.  Just Bush, Obama ignores all the warning signs without doing anything.  When disaster strikes, Obama would have the same line as Greenspan and Bush - "I did not know."