WASHINGTON, September 22 – As the Senate Budget Committee tentatively set a Thursday vote on the nomination of Jacob Lew to head the Office of Management and Budget, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a committee member, issued the following statement:
“Jack Lew has a long and distinguished career in public service and is clearly hard working and intelligent. Reluctantly, I will not vote to confirm Mr. Lew to be director of the Office of Management and Budget.
“As a result of the policies of President George W. Bush, the middle class in this country is collapsing, the gap between the very rich and everyone else is growing wider and we are continuing to hemorrhage good-paying manufacturing jobs overseas.
“Last week I applauded President Obama for appointing Elizabeth Warren to be the architect of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Professor Warren has a long track record of standing up for the middle class against the greed, recklessness and illegal behavior on Wall Street. We need more voices like Elizabeth Warren’s sending a clear message that the rules have changed and that the middle class in this country has a strong advocate.
“Jack Lew was kind enough to meet with me last week in my office and to answer my questions at a Senate Budget Committee hearing. Frankly, I found too many echoes of the failed policies of the past in his responses to my questions on trade policy, Social Security, deregulation of banks and other issues.
“It is my strong belief that President Obama needs an OMB Director who is willing to stand up to corporate America and the wealthy, say enough is enough, and fight for policies that protect the working class in this country. Unfortunately, I do not believe Mr. Lew is the right man at this time for this important job.”