July 25, 2012
Independent from Congress … or from the American People?
Congress will vote tomorrow on auditing the Federal Reserve.
The Federal Reserve says that an audit will interfere with it’s “independence”. For example, in Congressional testimony on 2009, the vice chair of the Fed used the “i” word 30 times.
Democratic whip Steny Hoyer is urging Dems to vote no on auditing the Fed in order to preserve the Fed’s “independence”:
This bill impedes the independence of this critical institution. In order for the Federal Reserve to do its job effectively, it should not be subject to short-term political pressures.
Hoyer doesn’t speak for the wishes of Democrats. The overwhelming majority of Americans favor a full and complete audit, and disagree with the “independence” argument. For example, Bloomberg noted in 2010:
A majority of Americans are dissatisfied with the nation’s independent central bank, saying the U.S. Federal Reserve should either be brought under tighter political control or abolished outright, a poll shows.
Americans across the political spectrum say the Fed shouldn’t retain its current structure of independence. Asked if the central bank should be more accountable to Congress, left independent or abolished entirely, 39 percent said it should be held more accountable and 16 percent that it should be abolished. Only 37 percent favor the status quo.