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JOHNSON HOLDS CONFIRMATION HEARING FOR FIVE NOMINATIONS

March 13, 2014

WASHINGTON – Today, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-SD) held a confirmation hearing for Dr. Stanley Fischer, to be a Member and Vice Chairman of the Fed Board of Governors; The Honorable Jerome H. Powell and the Honorable Lael Brainard, to be Members of the Fed Board of Governors; Mr. Gustavo Velasquez Aguilar, to be an Assistant Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development; and Mr. J. Mark McWatters, to be a Member of the National Credit Union Administration Board.

Below is Chairman Johnson’s statement as prepared for delivery:

“Before we begin this morning, I want to say a few words about Housing Finance Reform. First, I want to thank Ranking Member Crapo. He has been a great partner throughout this process, and I am very pleased we were able to announce our agreement Tuesday. Second, I want to thank all of the cosponsors of Corker-Warner. A lot of work went into their effort, and it provided a good base for the Committee’s negotiations. I also want to thank the other members of this Committee who provided invaluable input during this process. Last, I look forward to working with all of my colleagues on the Committee in the coming weeks as we work to move the best possible bill out of the Committee.

“Today we consider five nominations: Dr. Stanley Fischer, to be a Member and Vice Chairman of the Fed Board of Governors; The Honorable Jerome H. Powell and the Honorable Lael Brainard, to be Members of the Fed Board of Governors; Mr. Gustavo Velasquez Aguilar, to be an Assistant Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development; and Mr. J. Mark McWatters, to be a Member of the National Credit Union Administration Board.

“The Federal Reserve Board currently has important tasks at hand, including completing the implementation of Wall Street Reform; establishing policies to improve financial stability, reduce systemic risk, and end “too-big-to-fail”; and providing monetary policy to grow our economy and improve employment. It is important the Board has thoughtful leaders who will not apply a one-size-fits-all approach with its rules on community banks, traditional insurance companies, and asset managers. It is critical that we have a full Board, with diverse view points, and ready to respond to economic challenges that may arise. Dr. Fischer, Mr. Powell, and Dr. Brainard are all very well-qualified to serve as Fed Board Governors. Mr. Velasquez served from 2007 through 2013 as the Director of the District of Columbia Office of Human Rights, and he will bring on-the-ground experience to the role of Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity to ensure all Americans have equal access to housing.

“Last, Mr. McWatters has been nominated to fill an expired seat on the NCUA Board. The National Credit Union Administration plays a vital role in overseeing credit unions in communities across this country. I believe Mr. McWatters will hit the ground running, with an eagerness to learn more about these important community financial institutions. It is my hope we can act quickly on all five of these nominations.”

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