Senator Paul Threatens to Block Fed Nominees

May 13, 2014

U.S. Senator Rand Paul, R-KY
Credit WKU Public Radio

U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky is threatening to delay the approval of three Federal Reserve nominees unless the Senate considers his transparency bill. 

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senator Paul threatens to block votes on President Barack Obama’s picks for the Federal Reserve Board. 

Paul, considered a 2016 GOP presidential contender, said he wants a vote on his bill giving Congress more power to audit and review Fed actions. 

"My bill calls to eliminate all restrictions placed on Government Accountability Office (GAO) audits of the Federal Reserve," Paul writes.  "The Fed's credit facilities, securities purchases, and quantitative easing activities would also be subject to Congressional oversight."

Similar legislation proposed by the senator’s father, former Congressman Ron Paul, cleared the House with bipartisan support in 2012, but has been stalled in the Senate for more than three years.  Due to changes in Senate rules, Paul’s bid to block the nominees is unlikely to be successful.

Fed officials have said that exposing monetary policy decisions would endanger the central bank's independence from political pressure.