GOP Senators Grilled Biden’s Banking Nominee

Republican lawmakers questioned the candidacy of Saule Omarova, who was nominated by Biden for the top post at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).

She became a controversial figure when her video wishing for the bankruptcy of oil and gas companies went viral, as she suggested it as a solution to counter climate change.

Saule Omarova’s confirmation will limit Americans’ freedom

The OCC nominations have hardly sparked any public debate in the past, but this time, it alerted GOP lawmakers, and for all the right reasons. Omarova is a Cornell University professor, having radical views to control the banking sector of the country.

Pat Toomey, a GOP senator from Pennsylvania, closed the Senate hearing on Thursday with a warning about Omarova’s confirmation. The senator asserted Omarova would nationalize the banking system of the country and extend government authority on price control.

The Republican senator likewise added her confirmation would limit the economic freedom of average Americans, not to mention it will also help the government seize important seats on corporate boards.

During her hearing, Omarova endorsed the idea of giving the government some seats on the private corporations’ board, which raised the eyebrows of many Republican lawmakers. Toomey added the economic policy of Omarova is consistent with socialism, which is disturbing for the economic sector of the United States.

When she was questioned about her involvement in a communist union present in the erstwhile Soviet Union, Omarova’s birthplace, she perceived it as character assassination.

She was grilled by Senator John Kennedy over that matter, who pushed the nominee to show him the resignation letter from the organization.

Kennedy noted he was confused about whether to call Omarova a professor or a comrade. At this point, she continuously defended her bid as the nominee, saying Kennedy was assassinating her character.

Omarova wants bankruptcy of oil, gas, and coal companies

Democrat Senator Jon Tester asked her if she stood by her comments about the oil and gas industry; Omarova backtracked from her earlier remarks, saying they were perceived wrongly.

Tester is one of the Democrats having deep concerns about Omarova’s nomination, as he belongs to Montana, a state driven by the oil and gas sector. Not only Tester, but Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema also raised their concerns about Omarova’s candidacy, which makes her confirmation quite difficult. 

Omarova also envisioned making an independent agency free from congressional or executive oversight to allocate private or even public money into different projects.

Omarova’s radical policy approach about reshaping the economic structure of the United States is bothering many stakeholders. During one of her interviews in 2020, Omarova said she felt guilty about leaving the USSR at such a “momentous time.”

Likewise, Omarova has also denigrated the US economic system, saying the free markets of the US were inferior to those controlled by the state in the former Soviet Union.