25 Jan 2010

White House confident of support for Bernanke

8:01 am on 25 January 2010

The White House says it is confident of Ben Bernanke's confirmation as Federal Reserve chairman for a second term.

Senator Mitch McConnell (Republican) also said that he believed Mr Bernanke would be confirmed with bi-partisan support.

The BBC reports there has been opposition from senators in both parties to Mr Bernanke's second term. Critics say he did not do enough to prevent the economic crisis.

Many feel he has paid too much attention to Wall Street and not enough attention to the general American public - where unemployment has touched 10% and many are struggling with mortgage repayments.

Senators are scheduled to vote on Mr Bernanke by the end of the week.

Mr Obama contacted Senate allies over the weekend to make the case for Mr Bernanke.

Senior White House adviser David Axelrod told CNN Mr Bernanke's leadership is needed. He described the Fed chairman as "a very steady hand in this crisis".