Yellen Confirmed as Fed Chair Despite Knee-Jerk Republican Opposition

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Janet Yellen has been confirmed as Fed chair with 56 votes. Bad weather kept a lot of senators out of town, but even if everyone had been present she would have gotten no more than about 66 votes:

It is the thinnest margin of Senate approval for a Fed chairman in the central bank’s history. Mr. Bernanke was confirmed for a second term as chairman with 70 yes votes and 30 no votes in 2010.

Only 11 Republicans voted for Yellen’s confirmation, despite the fact that she’s perhaps the best qualified nominee in history; has demonstrated considerable foresight during her term as vice-chair; and almost literally has provided no reason to vote against her. But it doesn’t matter. She’s Obama’s nominee, so she has to be opposed. If Republicans want to know why Democrats finally got fed up enough to change the filibuster rules, this vote speaks louder than any words possibly could.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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