The House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform approved a measure today that would audit the Federal Reserve, in spite of intense opposition from Democratic legislators and global banking sector.
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) introduced H.R. 24, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2017, more commonly referred to as “Audit the Fed.” It is the copy of legislation that Massie introduced in the past, based on Rep. Ron Paul’s signature bill that he introduced repeatedly over the course of his Congressional career.
“Behind closed doors, the Fed crafts monetary policy that will continue to devalue our currency, slow economic growth, and make life harder for the poor and middle class,” Massie said in a press release about his bill.
H.R. 24 is accompanied by S. 16 in the Senate, which was introduced by Senator Rand Paul (R-KY). Although Massie’s bill was approved in committee today, it still faces potential pitfalls before passage.
While Sen. Paul indicated via Tweet that he has support from President Trump on the Fed audit, Trump’s own administration seems to have other plans. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, a long-time stalwart of Goldman Sachs, apparently opposes additional central bank transparency.
“As you know, the Federal Reserve is organized with sufficient independence to conduct monetary policy… I endorse the increased transparency we have seen from the Federal Reserve Board over recent years,” Sec. Mnuchin wrote in a vague answer to a query from Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) regarding a Federal Reserve audit, seemingly indicating his opposition.
It remains to be seen if Sen. Paul and Rep. Massie can sway Trump in his direction against voices of his own Administration. With animus building between Trump and the Freedom Caucus over health care reform, the liberty-leaning legislators may have a tough road ahead of them getting a Fed audit passed and signed by the President.