Washington, D.C.—Today, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA) released the following statement in response to Treasury Secretary-designate Janet Yellen’s confirmation hearing testimony.

Dr. Yellen previously served as Chair of the Federal Reserve and Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA). If confirmed, she would be the first woman to serve as Treasury Secretary, and the first person to lead CEA, the Federal Reserve and Treasury.

“Janet Yellen’s testimony was music to my ears—and I am sure millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet would say the same.

“She said everything you would want a Treasury Secretary nominee to say during this troubling time for the U.S. economy: most importantly, that in order to rebuild and recover we must first control the coronavirus, and that we need to provide robust relief to families, unemployed workers and small businesses until we do.

“As Dr. Yellen mentioned, one of the critical components of this relief is unemployment insurance (UI). I look forward to supporting the Yellen Treasury’s efforts on this front, especially in light of her past support for tying UI to economic conditions.

“In addition, one day after celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I was particularly pleased to hear her address an issue that this committee plans to focus on—economic inequality. The coronavirus has made the ‘K-shaped’ economy she mentioned crystal clear, and the Joint Economic Committee plans to examine policy interventions that will eliminate economic inequality from root to branch.

“I was also particularly pleased to hear Dr. Yellen address the ‘existential threat’ of climate change—another issue this Committee plans to focus on. Putting a price on carbon and other policy interventions in this area are not only good for the planet, they are good for the economy.”