Senate panel OKs Fed nominee, but prospects dim

AP News
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Posted: May 12, 2011 10:13 AM
Senate panel OKs Fed nominee, but prospects dim

A Senate panel has advanced the nomination of a Nobel prize winning economist to sit on the Federal Reserve. But the prospects for full Senate confirmation remain dim as Republicans strongly oppose President Barack Obama's pick.

The Senate Banking Committee sent Peter Diamond's nomination to the Senate for consideration after taking a 12-10 party-line vote. It marked the third time in a year that the panel approved his nomination. But Republicans have twice kept the Senate from confirming the economist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and now they hold more seats in the chamber.

Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama, the panel's highest-ranking Republican, on Thursday opposed the nomination, arguing that Diamond doesn't have the right qualifications and practical experience for the job.