(Reuters) – The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to confirm Philip Jefferson, an economist and Davidson College’s dean of faculty, to the Federal Reserve Board.
Jefferson’s appointment was approved by a 91-7 vote with all of the no votes coming from Republicans. He is the fourth Black man to be a governor at the U.S. central bank. His term runs to 2036.
Lawmakers on Thursday are expected to hand Jerome Powell a second term as Fed chair, though that confirmation vote is likely to be by a slimmer margin.
However, that vote will amount not only to an endorsement of his handling of the pandemic crisis and the devastating 2020 recession that marked his first term, but also for the round of sharp interest rate hikes he began in March to fight the decades-high inflation that is marring his second.
Jefferson was confirmed a day after Vice President Kamala Harris cast a tie-breaking vote on the Senate floor to confirm another of President Joe Biden’s nominees to the Fed, Michigan State University’s Lisa Cook.
She is the first Black woman to become a Fed governor. Two Black governors have never before served simultaneously on the Fed Board.
For Jefferson, the confirmation …read more