Tuesday 19 January 2021
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Biden administration’s economists to be largely libertarian women

While Trump was considered right-wing, his protectionist policy turned the market sluggish, from where libertarians alone can extricate Biden

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Politics World Biden administration's economists to be largely libertarian women

US President-elect Joe Biden today made the announcement of his senior economic team. Among his plans is to nominate the first woman to head the Treasury Department as well as a posse of liberal economists and policy specialists. With their performance, they have reportedly pleased the party that will rule America for the next four years in the capacity of functionaries of the two previous Democratic administrations.

Biden said in a statement that he would nominate former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen to lead the Treasury Department. Former Clinton and Obama adviser Neera Tanden will serve as director of the Office of Management and Budget.

He named former Obama administration official Wally Adeyemo as his nominee for Deputy Treasury Secretary. He was the first CEO of the former president’s non-profit foundation.

Biden also unveiled his White House economic team, consisting of economists Cecilia Rouse, Jared Bernstein and Heather Boushey.

Placing a premium on diversity in his selection of Cabinet nominees and key advisers, Biden is looking to notch at least a few firsts with his economic team selections, reports news agency Associated Press. Yellen will be the first woman to lead the Treasury Department and Adeyemo the first Black deputy secretary.

Tanden would be the first woman of colour to lead OMB and Rouse the first woman of colour to chair the Council of Economic Advisers. “As we get to work to control the virus, this is the team that will deliver immediate economic relief for the American people during this economic crisis and help us build our economy back better than ever,” Biden said.

President-elect Joe Biden was expected for the past few days to name several of his most senior economic advisers. While outgoing President Donald Trump was believed to be more rightward leaning than Democrats, he led a protectionist regime. To extricate the economy from the leftist sluggishness caused by the absence of competition, Biden’s a group is likely to be dominated by several libertarians among the economists.

While the Biden campaign has not yet announced his selections, these are some of the individuals the president-elect is expected to pick for high-profile positions on his economic team:

Joe Biden would like Janet Yellen to be treasury secretary

Yellen had become the Federal Reserve chair in 2014 when the economy was still recovering from the devastating Great Recession. In the late 1990s, she was President Bill Clinton’s top economic adviser during the Asian financial crisis.

Under Biden, Yellen would lead the Treasury Department with the economy in the grip of a surging pandemic.

If confirmed, Yellen would become the first woman to lead the Treasury Department in its nearly 232-year history. She would inherit an economy with still-high unemployment, escalating threats to small businesses and signs that consumers are retrenching as the pandemic restricts or discourages spending.

Neera Tanden might be management and budget director in Biden administration

Tanden is the president and CEO of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress. She was the director of domestic policy for the Obama-Biden presidential campaign, but she first made her mark in the Clinton orbit.

Tanden served as policy director for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign. Before that, she served as a legislative director in Clinton’s Senate office and deputy campaign manager and issues director for Clinton’s 2000 Senate campaign. She also served as a senior policy adviser in the Bill Clinton administration.

If confirmed, she would be the first woman of color and the first South Asian woman to lead the OMB, the agency that oversees the federal budget.

But Senate Republicans are signaling they’ll oppose confirmation. Late Sunday a spokesman for GOP Sen. John Cornyn of Texas tweeted that Tanden “stands zero chance of being confirmed.” And Josh Holmes, a political adviser to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, tweeted that confirmation was likely doomed. Republicans hold the edge in the current Senate, although next year’s majority won’t be decided until Jan. 5 runoffs in two races involving GOP incumbents in Georgia.

Brian Deese likely director of White House National Economic Council

Deese, a former senior economic adviser in the Obama administration and now the managing director and global head of sustainable investing at BlackRock, would be the top economic adviser in the Biden White House.

Deese worked on the auto bailout and environmental issues in the Obama White House, where he held the title of deputy director of both the NEC and the OMB.

Cecilia Rouse might be chairwoman of Council of Economic Advisers

Rouse is a labour economist and head of Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs. She served on the CEA from 2009 to 2011, and served on the NEC from 1998 to 1999 in the Clinton administration.

Notably, she organised a letter earlier this year signed by more than 100 economists calling for more government action to mitigate the fallout for Americans caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Rouse, who is Black, would be the first woman of color to chair the CEA.

Biden is also expected to name Heather Boushey, the president and CEO of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, and Jared Bernstein, who served as an economic adviser to Biden during the Obama administration, to serve on the council. Both Boushey and Bernstein advised Biden during the presidential campaign.

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