Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Tarullo Sworn in as Member of the Fed Board of Governors

Daniel K. Tarullo took the oath of office, today, as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The oath was administered by Chairman Bernanke in the Board Room.

The Senate earlier this week confirmed Tarullo, a former Clinton administration official.

Before joining the Clinton administration, he served as Chief Counsel for Employment Policy on the staff of Senator Edward M. Kennedy, and practiced law in Washington, D.C. He also worked in the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice and as Special Assistant to the Undersecretary of Commerce. From 1981 to 1987, Tarullo taught at Harvard Law School.

The vote to confirm Tarullo was 96-1. Only Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., voted against Tarullo.

Senator Bunning's office tells me that when the Senator met with Tarullo, he was unimpressed and that the Senator felt Tarullo was unlikely to break the logjam of group think at the Fed.

This is a very curious nomination by Obama. Tarullo has a stronger background in law than in finance. Word has it that he may be tight with White House advisor Larry Summers, who may be angling for Bernanke's spot. Thus, Tarullo may have been placed to watch Bernanke, rather than the economy. Consider, Tarullo a Summers chess piece.

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