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Baucus, Feinstein Announce Support for Bernanke

Ben Bernanke’s once-embattled nomination for a second term as chairman of the Federal Reserve continued to pick up steam Monday with the announcement that two key Senators — Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) — will vote in favor of his confirmation.“I believe it would be a mistake not to reconfirm Ben Bernanke as Chairman of the Federal Reserve,— Feinstein said in a statement, adding: “To blame one man for the financial implosion is simply wrong.—Added Baucus: “I have full faith he will continue to use his post as Chairman of the Federal Reserve to create jobs, help middle class families and continue to get our economy back on track.—White House officials canvassed the Senate to rally support for Bernanke’s nomination, which picked up several key supporters over the weekend, including Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.). Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) declared his support for Bernanke on Friday. Appointed by President George W. Bush in 2005 and renominated by President Barack Obama last year, Bernanke’s nomination appears headed for confirmation this week. But with a handful of holds that have stalled action in recent weeks, Reid will likely have to file a procedural motion to clear the nomination. Bernanke’s current term ends Jan. 31.In an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press,— Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) refused to say whether he would vote to confirm Bernanke, but said repeatedly: “He’s going to have bipartisan support in the Senate, and I anticipate he will be confirmed.—

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