On the Hill

Bernanke Defends His Record

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is likely to be confirmed for a second term, but first comes the congressional grilling. Taking questions from the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday, The Wall Street Journal says Bernanke’s testimony highlights “the disconnect in Washington between opinions of Mr. Bernanke’s leadership during the financial crisis and a growing skepticism about the central bank’s wide-ranging authority to respond in times of financial stress.” Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), for example, said Bernanke had done a “very good job” but asked “Why should I give an institution that failed … that type of exclusive authority?” when discussing a plan to broaden the Fed’s regulatory powers.