President Obama last week nominated two senior US Senate
aides to replace one Democratic and one Republican commissioner of the Securities
and Exchange Commission. As we know, there are 5 commissioners, two from each
party and then the fifth is a chair from the party of the sitting President.
Obama chose Kara M. Stein (Democrat) and Michael S.
Piwowar (Republican). Both worked on the Dodd-Frank bill which will hopefully
help speed the finishing of the rulemakings under that law. Stein currently
works for Senator Jack Reed (RI-D). Piwowar works as an economist on the Senate
Banking Committee, which oversees the SEC. It will be good to have an economist
sitting up there on these issues. It's not clear if either of these nominees
were actively involved in the JOBS Act, but it did go through the Senate
Banking Committee. It does appear they know each other and have worked together
which is good. Plus their confirmation should go smoothly since they are being
confirmed by folks who know them in the Senate.
Of course, however, this also means more delay as these
two new commissioners go through their nomination hearings, get confirmed, get
settled and begin to talk with Chair Mary Jo White about priorities. Let's hope
that's a relatively short period!
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