Trump discusses firing Chairman of the Federal Reserve - cause he ran out of people to blame
President Donald Trump doesn't like how the Fed is raising rates, so according to Bloomberg, he's discussing firing Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell.
The Fed is supposed to be an independent body, but to Trump, that doesn't matter.
In fact, it's pretty common perception that a sitting U.S. President can't fire the chairman of its board of governors once they take office, but that's not entirely correct.
While the Federal Reserve Act doesn't explicitly give Trump the power to fire Fed board members, there is a section that indicates it's possible, "with cause."
Here's what Section 10 states:
“…thereafter each member shall hold office for a term of fourteen years from the expiration of the term of his predecessor, unless sooner removed for cause by the President.”
What does cause mean? No one knows.
Presidents haven't historically paid attention to Section 10, nor have they felt the need to use it.
If Trump is going to make the argument that he doesn't like the Fed raising interest rates, and he gets away with firing Chairman Powell, that means he would be fired for doing things that fall under his job description. That doesn't sound very legal under the provision.
Right now it's anybody's guess if Trump would ever follow through on the threat, but unnamed advisers have told Bloomberg that he hasn't yet backed down from the idea.
Trump has been publicly mentioning his distaste for the interest rate increases, and Powell even pushed back against the president by making comments of his own at a press conference at the time.
“I know, and everyone who works at the Fed knows, that we’re going to do our jobs the way we’ve always done them,” Powell said.
All Trump wants to do is see the economy improve under his watch, and not hurt his re-election prospects. With the stock market experiencing its worst December since 1931, and worst week since October of 2008, Trump sounds like he's getting desperate.