The White House has officially nominated President Joe Biden for two seats on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, with the expected resignation of another commissioner.
In Friday’s announcement, the White House said it had sent Citi CEO Caroline Pham and Summer Mersinger to the Senate for confirmation. Mersinger previously served as chief of staff for Commissioner Don Stump, who is expected to leave the agency this year, and director of the Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs. She and Pham will take over as recently retired Commissioner Dan Berkowitz, whose term ends in April 2023, and Stamps, whose term ends in April 2027.
The CFTC nominations surfaced the same week that the White House officially announced that it had sent Jerome Powell and Lyle Brainard’s nominations to the Senate pending approval before taking over as the next chairman and vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, respectively. Senate confirmation will allow Powell and Brainard to serve as two Fed CEOs until 2026. President Biden also named Christy Goldsmiths Romero and Kristen Johnson on Tuesday for the remaining CFTC vacancies.
With the appointment of four CFTC commissioners to be confirmed by US legislators, there will be no vacancies in the agency in 2022 following a leadership change. In September, Berkowitz announced that he intends to leave the CFTC on October 15 to join the Securities and Exchange Commission as attorney general, and in December the Senate approved Rustin Behnam as CFTC chairman.
The Democratic Party, led by President Joe Biden, currently controls 50 of the 100 Senate seats, and Vice President Kamala Harris can act as a tie-breaker if needed. A simple majority is required to confirm the election of CFTC President.
Although the White House has submitted four candidatures to CFTC commissioners, it has yet to formally name candidates to fill the Federal Reserve’s vacancies. Board member Randall Quarles retired at the end of December 2021, and current representative Richard Clarida is expected to retire by February 2022. A report from The Washington Post on Wednesday indicated that the US president is studying law professor Sarah Bloom at Duke Ruskin University. Founding Group Of seven governors working for the Federal Reserve, plus economists Lisa Cook and Philip Jefferson.
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It could also be an opportunity for Biden to change the leadership of another government agency responsible for regulating digital assets in the United States – the Securities and Exchange Commission. SEC Commissioner Elad Roseman is expected to leave the agency by the end of January, while Commissioner Alison Lee’s term expires in June. Some experts point out that the position of various financial experts in these three major US governments could influence cryptocurrency-related policies.