President Joe Biden’s nominee for the Comptroller of the Currency dropped her bid after Republicans assailed her for past comments and writings expressing
extremist economic views.
Saule Omarova said in a statement Tuesday that she was withdrawing her name from consideration because “at this point in the process … it is no longer tenable for me to continue” as a nominee.
“I am writing to you today with a request to withdraw my candidacy from further consideration for the position of the U.S. Comptroller of the Currency,” Omarova wrote. “It was a great honor and a true privilege to be nominated by President Biden to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency overseeing the U.S. national banking system.”
Omarova was born in Kazakhstan when it was still under Soviet control. Her great-grandparents had been labeled enemies of the state under Josef Stalin, and sent to Siberia. Omarova was studying at the University of Wisconsin-Madison when the Soviet Union collapsed.
She later worked in the Treasury Department under George W. Bush, but Republicans opposing her nomination found evidence that she had ideological sympathies for Marxism and communism.
“Here what I’m thinking about is primarily the coal and oil and gas industry. A lot of the smaller players in that industry are going to probably go bankrupt in short order, at least we want them to go bankrupt if we want to tackle climate change,” said Omarova
in a video conference about social wealth in March.
Another piece of evidence used against Omarova was a tweet where she complained about the gender inequity in the U.S. economic system ascompared to the centralized system of the Soviet Union.
“Say what you will about old USSR, there was no gender pay gap there,” she claimed in the 2019 tweet.
Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania released a statement responding to the withdrawal of Omarova’s nomination.
“During the confirmation process, a bipartisan consensus emerged that Professor Omarova’s self-proclaimed radical ideas for America’s financial system were not suitable for our nation’s top banking regulator,” wrote Toomey.
“I hope the Biden administration will select a nominee with mainstream views about the American economy,” he added.
Biden also released a statement decrying Republicans and claiming that “Saule was subjected to inappropriate personal attacks that were far beyond the pale.”
Here’s part of the Senate hearing on Omarova’s nomination:
‘You Scared The Heck Out Of Them’: GOP Senator Bashes Saule Omarova Over Her Views On Banks