Trump's plan to name Herman Cain to Fed meets Republican pushback

David Knowles

President Trump’s plan to nominate Herman Cain to the board of the Federal Reserve may run afoul of opposition — including from Republicans who seem baffled by the choice of the eccentric businessman and political activist.

Last week Trump said that Cain, the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, would be nominated to the board of the nation’s central bank.

“I’ve recommended Herman Cain,” Trump told reporters at the White House. “A terrific man, a terrific person. He’s a friend of mine.”

That recommendation wasn’t good enough for many Senate Republicans.

Herman Cain (Molly Riley/AP)
Herman Cain (Molly Riley/AP)

“I don’t think Herman Cain will be on the Federal Reserve Board, no,” Sen. Mitt Romney said, adding that Trump’s push to infuse partisan politics into the Federal Reserve was unwise.

“I feel that we can’t turn the Federal Reserve into a more partisan entity,” Romney said.

Cain, who runs a pro-Trump super-PAC, dropped out of the 2012 Republican presidential primary amid allegations of sexual harassment.

Trump has also been pushing the potential nomination of conservative economist Stephen Moore to the Fed board over opposition from Democrats and questions about his economic philosophy.

Without specifically naming Cain or Moore, Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., questioned the qualifications of some of Trump’s nominees.

“I think it’d be really good if they consult ahead of time and find out,” Thune told reporters Tuesday. “There are some names out there that aren’t confirmable and we would tell them that, if asked.”

Most of Trump’s major nominees have won Senate confirmation. Two — Andrew Puzder for secretary of labor and Ronny Jackson to be head of Veterans Affairs — withdrew their names before a vote, in the face of widespread criticism.

Cain himself seems all too aware that his prospects of being confirmed to the Fed board are looking dim.

“Whether or not I make it through this process, time will tell. Would I be disappointed if I don’t make it through this process? No. Would I be thrilled and honored if I make it through this process? Yes,” Cain said in a video posted to Facebook last Friday.

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