President Obama faces tough decision appointing Chair of Federal - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

President Obama faces tough decision appointing Chair of Federal Reserve

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(KYTX) - Looking ahead our President has a very tough decision on his hands. He will soon have to appoint the new Federal Reserve Chair. Current Chair Ben Bernanke is expected to retire when his term ends.

As CBS News Jeff Pegeus reports, Obama is taking the decision very seriously. The president is candid about the choice he faces.

"This is the most important economic decision I will make in my presidency," President Obama said.

Among the favorites, is Former Obama Economic Advisor Lawrence Summers and the current Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen. The names are sparking debate in Washington about whether sexism is at play in the decision.

A woman has never held the job as Fed Chair and George Washington University Professor Lara Brown says there is a perception of bias. "These are important roles that are "seen" as sort of "men's issues". Money and war. Both of those things require a masculine temperament according to the stereotypes." 

While Summers isn't weighing in on the debate, his comments eight years ago about gender differences in mathematical abilities still haunt him.

During a speech as Harvard President, Summers was quoted as saying."it does appear that on many, many different human attributes....there is a difference in the standard deviation, and variability of a male and a female population" summers later apologized…

Former Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve Alice Nivlin has worked with both Summers and Yellen.

 The president compares choosing a federal reserve chairman to picking a Supreme Court Justice. He emphasized that while both Summers and Yellen are highly qualified, he is considering other candidates as well.

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