Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sununu Throws a Hummer Under Geithner's Chin

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner appeared before an oversight panel on Capitol Hill yesterday. 

During questioning by AFL-CIO General Counsel Damon Silvers over the public’s downside risks in the plan to buy troubled assets, there was some confusion over the secretary’s resume.

“I’ve practiced law and you’ve been in banking,” Silvers said at one point during a disagreement over the way the public’s exposure to risk was being presented in a chart.

Geithner interrupted: “I’ve only been in public service,” he said. Silvers went on, “A long time ago.”


“Investment banking, I meant,” Silvers tried.

“Never investment banking,” Geithner said. The secretary has worked in the public sector for just about all of his career, serving in the Treasury Department across three administrations, working for the IMF and his most recent job as head of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Perhaps Silvers meant that Geithner had been a central banker?

Silvers’ time for questioning had run out as the issue was being resolved. But former Sen. John Sununu took it up as his time began. “I’d never confuse you for an investment banker,” Sununu said.

Geithner responded: “I don’t think you meant that as a compliment, but I’ll take that as a compliment.”


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