Senate Likely to Vote on Bernanke Confirmation This Week
The Senate is likely to vote this week on the confirmation of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke for a second term and there appears to be increasing support for him among lawmakers.
While some lawmakers of both parties have said they'll oppose Bernanke, whose current term expires on Sunday, a plurality said they would support him, but his nomination isn't certain.
A survey by Dow Jones Newswires found 35 senators said they would vote for Bernanke's confirmation while 17 are opposed and the remainder didn't comment.
The White House has been lobbying hard for Bernanke, especially because in light of several lawmakers putting a hold on the nomination, he needs 60 votes-rather than a simple majority of 51-to be confirmed.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), on Friday announced he'll support Bernanke. He made his decision following a conversation with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel which contained, according to a New York Times account, "some of Mr. Emanuel's characteristic profanity."
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) predicted Bernanke would be confirmed but declined to say whether he would vote for him.