I would like to thank you, Mr. Chairman, for holding this nomination hearing and I would like to thank our nominees for coming before us today.
I don't think it has been any secret that I have occasionally disagreed with the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Dr. Alan Greenspan.
I think he sometimes starts getting involved in things that he really is not supposed to worry about, instead on concentrating on monetary policy.
To be fair, many times he gets involved and comments on things that are not under his job description because members of Congress ask him for his opinion. I just wish he would decline to answer those questions.
I do think that there has been a problem at the Fed, one we are trying to correct. I believe there has not been a lot of independent thought over there.
Obviously the Chairman is a very intelligent and well respected man. I am sure he can be very persuasive and possibly even intellectually intimidating to some. Especially when the rest of the Board is going along with him.
But we think all of the board members are smart. We would not vote for them if we didn't.
What I want of the individual Governors are strong people who will not be afraid to speak up when they think the Chairman is wrong.
I want people who are not afraid to be the lone dissenting vote.
We need strong, independent Fed Governors who are willing to challenge the status quo and to make the hard call. We do not need governors who never question the Chairman, or other Board members, who will never take the contrary view.
This is a 14 year term we are voting on. If we screw it up, it will be a long time before we can fix it. Many of us won't be around here to fix it.
If our two nominees can convince me that they will be independent voices who are not afraid to be the lone dissenter, they will have my support for their nomination.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.