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Massie: U.S. House May Be Moving Closer to Audit the Fed Vote

A bill for a Federal Reserve audit may be moving closer to a vote before Congress adjourns.

In a recent op-ed, Kentucky US Rep. Thomas Massie indicated that his legislation to audit the Federal Reserve may be near a vote in the House. It passed committee in May.

Massie argued in the Louisville Courier-Journal that “cursory audits” of the Federal Reserve by the Government Accounting Office (GAO) are incomplete. He also writes:

“A programmatic audit must also be completed so that Congress can understand what the Fed actually does, and why the Fed does it.”

Massie’s audit the Fed bill differs from other Federal Reserve audits. The GAO still conducts the audit in Massie’s bill. The bill eliminates restrictions present in previous audits. Notably, this includes removing restrictions on the bank’s activities with international financial institutions.

Massie finished by saying that he is “hopeful that it will soon receive a full vote in the House.”

The current legislation has over 200 cosponsors. 191 are Republican along with 10 Democrats.

Massie introduced HR 24, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2015, shortly after the 114th Congress took office. In a press release issued at the time, Massie declared he wanted to allow the public to see some of the activities of the secretive banking organization. He said:

“Behind closed doors, the Fed crafts monetary policy that will continue to devalue our currency, slow economic growth, and make life harder for the poor and middle class.”

A vote to audit the Federal Reserve in the Senate failed by seven votes in January. A notable absence for the vote was Sen. Ted Cruz, a vocal supporter of auditing the Federal Reserve, who was running for the Republican nomination. Radio host Glenn Beck read an email he received from Cruz about missing the vote.

“If my vote would have made a difference in it passing, I would have canceled all of my campaign events to be there,” Beck reported Cruz writing.

As of the summer, Sen. Rand Paul is still trying to summon allies for his Senate version of the bill. Most Republicans already support it along with some Democrats and independents, including Bernie Sanders. 60 votes would reach cloture and lead to a vote.

“If [Sanders] would go out and get five or six Democrats, we might be able to get across the finish line,” Paul said.

Congress is in session until the end of the month, so the window for a Federal Reserve audit is dwindling. After October 1, Congress will not return until November, during the so-called lame duck session.

Photo Source: Tischenko Irina / shutterstock.com