Tag: Oversight

Classic Pelosi

There is a congressional committee that is supposed to provide oversight of the Federal Reserve’s actions during the bailout.

One of the 3 members is appointed by the Democrats, and Pelosi ignored knowledgeable people who wanted the job and appointed freshmen Congresswoman, corporate stooge, and strike breaker Donna Shalala (D-Fla.), because bailing out rich people and f%$#ing the American worker is a core value of Speaker Pelosi:

For the past week, we’ve watched this absurd spectacle where money is flying out the door of the Federal Reserve bailout programs, and the only person in a position to conduct oversight has nothing more than a Twitter feed. Bharat Ramamurti, the former Elizabeth Warren staffer who I interviewed last week, was until yesterday the only member of the Congressional Oversight Commission, a five-member panel outside of the executive branch (so Donald Trump can’t fire anyone associated with it) charged with monitoring the bailout.

Ramamurti and his tweets have been unusually effective, getting the Fed to agree to publish all transactions that use public funds, and some detailed information. But it’s clear that he needs some help: a staff, an office, and maybe the other four members on the panel to cover what could reach $4.5 trillion in corporate lending.

He got three of them yesterday. Republican leaders in the House and Senate chose nondescript Congressman French Hill (R-AR) and Chamber of Commerce mole Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA). The pick to watch was the House Democratic seat. There was no obligation to choose a sitting member of Congress, but Katie Porter (D-CA) was actively seeking the job, and really was the only member actively seeking the job. With deep experience in financial services and demonstrated aptitude with oversight, there was really no better person for the job.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi chose her friend, freshman Congresswoman Donna Shalala (D-FL).

This is a stunning selection. Shalala, according to sources, had no interest in the job. She has no expertise in the financial industry or the Fed. The two committees that would prepare you for this position are Financial Services and Oversight (Porter sits on both). Shalala sits on Education and Labor and Rules. She’s on the early childhood education subcommittee, so if that ever comes up in discussing the Fed’s corporate bond or high-yield ETF purchases we’re in good shape.

Yes, Shalala was Health and Human Services Secretary. In her public statement, Pelosi highlights that, saying Shalala will “ensure that this historic coronavirus relief package is being used wisely and efficiently to protect the lives and livelihoods of the American people, and not be exploited by profiteers and price-gougers.”

But the oversight panel has nothing to do with public health or the pandemic. It’s supposed to examine Federal Reserve lending programs and whether they are assisting the public in economic stabilization and job recovery. These are deliberately complex programs that require for oversight someone with a passing familiarity with the financial system and corporate America. The only expertise Shalala has in all that comes from all the stocks she owns.

I know that Pelosi does a good job of keeping the House Democratic Caucus in line, but she has spent her entire career working for rich people at the expense of the ordinary working people.

Her career needs to end.