President Obama still seems fairly determined to pick his close friend Larry Summers to run the Federal Reserve but the path to his Senate confirmation has just gotten a bit trickier. John Cornyn, the second highest ranking Senate Republicans, now says he will oppose Summers. From the Huffington Post:
John Cornyn, the number two Republican in the Senate, would oppose Larry Summers if he were nominated to chair the Federal Reserve, Cornyn’s spokesperson told HuffPost. Summers, who is widely considered to be President Barack Obama’s top choice to lead the central bank, has run into a thicket of opposition across the political spectrum.
Cornyn’s opposition is a signal that Republican skepticism of Summers will be broad and deep, as outside conservative organizations are also beginning to take up the fight. Earlier this week, Roll Call reported that the American Principles Project, a conservative organization closely allied with Cornyn’s fellow Texan senator, Ted Cruz (R), is also battling Summers. “We want to see as many groups as possible on the right and the left” opposing his nomination, APP’s Rich Danker told Roll Call.
The best chance of stopping Summers is if appointing him starts to appear to be too much work. Obama has several priorities but only a limited amount of time to try to get Congress to act on them. If Summers seems to be a huge time and energy suck, Obama might decide it is a not a fight worth having.
So far, though, the administration has proven that it is willing to withstand a lot of bad press to defend Summers.