By Jonnelle Marte and Ann Saphir 

  (Reuters) – As President Joe Biden nears a decision on appointing a Federal Reserve chair, action over the matter continued to pick up on Friday in the U.S. Senate, which must confirm the choice, with a key moderate Democrat seeking time with the potential nominees and two more progressive lawmakers voicing opposition to the incumbent, Jerome Powell. 

  In the absence of a decision, lawmakers have been weighing in themselves on the two known candidates: Powell and Fed Governor Lael Brainard. On Friday the White House said there will be “more to report early next week” on Biden’s decision, which has taken on added significance with inflation raging at 30-year highs and eroding the first-term Democrat’s popularity.[nW1N2S304H] 

  Senator Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat who has not yet decided which candidate to support, is seeking to meet with Brainard and would like to hold a follow-up meeting with Powell after speaking with him on Wednesday, according to a report by Bloomberg. 

  Two progressive Democratic senators, Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island and Jeff Merkley of Oregon, issued a joint statement on Friday opposing Powell’s reappointment, saying he has not done enough to combat climate change, a …read more



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