President Donald Trump’s latest pick for the Federal Reserve board of governors drew unusually heated and immediate criticism from economic and political circles following the announcement, as MSN reports.
Stephen Moore, whose professional experience has largely been as a dramatic mouthpiece for conservative economic policies, was met with outrage by many economic policy experts. Because Moore’s nomination is subject to confirmation by the Senate, it is possible that he might not make his way to the board seat, particularly as social and traditional media has been lit up with commentators from all over the political spectrum expressing shock at his selection.
“He does not have the intellectual gravitas for this important job,” said Harvard Professor Greg Mankiw, who was also chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush. “It is time for senators to do their job. Mr. Moore should not be confirmed.”
Failing to confirm the pick would not be unprecedented. Trump has already seen two Fed picks, Nellie Liang and Marvin Goodfriend, scuttled by the Senate. Neither of the two had anywhere near the public backlash of Moore, nor any accusations that they were patently unqualified.
In fact, Moore himself seems to have some reservations about having the acumen necessary to do the job.
“I’m kind of new to this game, frankly, so I’m going to be on a steep learning curve myself about how the Fed operates, how the Federal Reserve makes its decisions,” he said. “It’s hard for me to say even what my role will be there, assuming I get confirmed.”
Moore’s sudden ascendancy to consideration for the Fed has being largely interpreted as driven by an opinion Trump developed watching him on television. Bloomberg reported that the president’s chief economic advisor, Larry Kudlow, showed Trump an op-ed piece co-authored by Moore celebrating the Trump administration’s economic policies. In fact, Moore had blamed the Federal Reserve for the economy’s failure to thrive as a result of Trump’s leadership.
"His seeming willingness to interpret any and all economic data so as to tell a story favorable to tax cuts and unfavorable to government spending marks him more as an ideologically motivated pundit than a true economist." – @Noahpinion https://t.co/uZ1OTot8Ty
— Tim O'Brien (@TimOBrien) March 22, 2019
Trump reportedly regretted not naming Moore chairman of the Fed in the first place and suggested that they consider Moore for a seat on the board.
The Federal Reserve’s primary responsibility is to manage the economy. The goal is to provide a maximum level of employment across the country and to maintain pricing stability at the same time. The Fed is also the nation’s lead banking regulator, meaning that the board is largely responsible for avoiding a substantial economic crash such as the one that occurred beginning in 2008.