Give economic weight to the plan to fight the Biden virus


WASHINGTON – On a cold, gray February afternoon, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen walked out of the West Wing, wrapped in a puffy black parka and holding a folder of documents, apparently oblivious to Washington’s custom of having a assistant to take care of the paperwork.

Seen as an alien to partisan politics, she now has a place in President Joe Biden’s inner sanctum, a doctorate. economist who reads, knows the numbers and treats his staff like peers rather than subordinates.

Yellen, his entourage, was in the White House to strategize on how to push through Biden’s proposed $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan – a set that could determine how fast the U.S. economy heals, how Democrats fare in the midterm elections and just how much Americans can trust the government to solve the nation’s toughest problems.

The House passed the package on Saturday, sending it to the Senate.

As the former chairman of the Federal Reserve, Yellen carries the authority of an official who once helped bring the economy back to health once and who has now been recalled at 74 for a recall after the former President Donald Trump refused to offer him another. term of office of president.

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She defines the need for the giant COVID-19 bill in strictly human terms, applying a lifetime of research and thought to the challenge of reclaiming jobs lost to the pandemic in record-breaking clip. And his credentials are enough to give Republican lawmakers and other economists pause for thought that the package is so important it would overwhelm the economy.

“Yellen is uniquely positioned,” said Brian Deese, director of the Biden National Economic Council. “She has as much experience and expertise to meet the challenges of our time as any business decision maker living today. She doesn’t have a steep learning curve.

Even in a partisan-torn Washington, Yellen is held in high regard by members of both parties. As chairman of the San Francisco Fed, she sounded the alarm bells for the housing bubble before it fully burst in 2008, triggering the Great Recession. She helped put the economy back on track as Vice President of the Fed, and then as President, she supported the longest expansion in U.S. history by keeping interest rates close. all-time lows.

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