Today, President Biden declared that fighting inflation is his top domestic priority and said he understands Americans’ frustration over high prices. Biden used a speech from the White House to address an issue that has become a major political liability for him. At the same time, he sought to draw contrasts with his Republican critics, noting the economic policies he is pushing while arguing that Republicans have no viable plan on inflation.
Meanwhile, voters in Nebraska and West Virginia head to the polls on Tuesday. A couple of Republican primaries will offer more tests of former president Donald Trump’s sway over GOP voters. That includes the governor’s race in Nebraska, where Trump is backing a candidate accused of sexual misconduct by multiple women.
Your daily dashboard
11:30 a.m. Eastern: Biden delivered remarks on inflation from the White House. Watch coverage here.
12 p.m. Eastern: Sens. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) held a news conference calling on the Biden administration to designate Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism. Watch coverage here.
2 p.m. Eastern: Biden holds a meeting with Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi at the White House.
2:30 p.m. Eastern: White House press secretary Jen Psaki briefs reporters. Watch live coverage here.
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On our radar: Economist Lisa Cook is likely to become first Black woman on Fed board
The economist Lisa Cook appears poised to become the first Black woman on the Federal Reserve Board, a historic moment for the central bank, Rachel Siegel reports.
The Senate is expected to vote on Cook’s nomination Tuesday afternoon. While no Republicans are expected to vote for Cook, she will still be confirmed by Democrats’ razor-thin majority. They may need Vice President Harris to cast a tiebreaking vote.
Cook is among the country’s preeminent economists and teaches at Michigan State University. Her research has focused on macroeconomics, economic history, international finance and innovation, particularly on how hate-related violence has harmed U.S. economic growth. Her work has analyzed how patent records show that the riots, lynchings and Jim Crow laws that targeted African American communities in the late 1800s and early 1900s hurt Black people’s ability to pursue inventions and discoveries at the time.
Her appointment to the Fed comes as the central bank attempts to stabilize the nation’s recovery amid the ongoing pandemic. Policymakers at the bank are dealing with the highest inflation in 40 years, and the central bank must rein in that inflation without jeopardizing the labor market and overall economic recovery from the pandemic.
Biden has sought to assemble the most diverse Fed board in the agency’s 108-year history. Per Rachel, Fed experts say the White House’s list of nominees has so far gone a long way to fulfilling Biden’s promise to make the Fed more reflective of the country it serves.