Congress Treats Bernanke With Less Respect

The shift in tone was subtle, but there was no doubt that the relationship between Congress and the Federal Reserve is changing, with more Hill demands for openness.

The shift in tone was subtle, but there was no doubt that the relationship between Congress and the Federal Reserve is changing, with more Hill demands for openness. Bernanke seemed to acknowledge that in advance, at least indirectly, by penning an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal defending his handling of the financial crisis and reaffirming his pledge to keep inflation in check.

Still, when Bernanke appeared before the House Financial Services Committee for his semiannual briefing on the economy, more Congressmen seemed willing to challenge him across a range of issues including whether the Fed's powers should be expanded, as President Obama has proposed.

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Jerome Idaszak
Contributing Editor, The Kiplinger Letter
Idaszak, now retired, worked on The Kiplinger Letter as its economics writer for 21 years. Before joining Kiplinger in 1992, he worked for 15 years with the Chicago Sun-Times, including five years as a columnist and economic correspondent in the Washington, D.C., bureau, covering five international economic summit meetings. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from Northwestern University.