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Nomination of Janet Louise Yellen

Floor Speech

Date: Jan. 25, 2021
Location: Washington, DC


Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Madam President, I rise in support of Janet Yellen's nomination to be Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. I've known Janet since she became president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in 2004. I believe she is an excellent nominee for this position.

Janet has an impressive record. She served twice on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and was the first woman to chair the Fed from 2014 to 2018. She became a professor of economics at the University of California--Berkeley in 1980, she is now professor emeritus. Dr. Yellen served as Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors under President Clinton and has been very active as a distinguished fellow at the Brookings Institution.

As some have joked, Janet's husband of 42 years, George, won the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, yet he is only the second-most accomplished economist in his own home.

All of these accomplishments did not come easily for a woman in the male-dominated field of economics.

Out of the 24 students who received doctorates in economics from Yale in 1971, Janet was the only woman. She has been a trailblazer her entire career.

Now, Janet brings the experience and leadership needed at the Treasury Department at this critical juncture.

I believe that Janet understands that the economy is not an abstract series of charts and figures, but a collection of real individuals, families, communities and businesses who need help now.

At the same time, she is pragmatic and recognizes the need for fiscal discipline. I believe she made that clear in her confirmation before the Finance Committee, where I had the honor of introducing her.

In short, she is the ideal candidate to head the Treasury Department at a time when we can afford nothing less. I urge the Senate to confirm her nomination. Thank you.