For Immediate Release
February 26, 2013
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Hatch Announces Support for Treasury Secretary Nominee Jacob Lew

Utah Senator Says, “I believe the President is owed a fair amount of deference in choosing people to work in his administration and, though I would have chosen a different person for this particular post, I intend to defer to President Obama with regard to the Lew nomination. That said, I do have serious reservations regarding Mr. Lew that have not been assuaged through the committee’s consideration of this appointment. In the end, I hope that he will prove me wrong.”

WASHINGTON – In advance of today’s Senate Finance Committee vote on the nomination of Jacob Lew to serve as Treasury Secretary, Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), delivered the following remarks outlining his support for the nominee:

At the outset, let me say that I intend to vote today in favor of Mr. Lew’s confirmation.  I believe the President is owed a fair amount of deference in choosing people to work in his administration and, though I would have chosen a different person for this particular post, I intend to defer to President Obama with regard to the Lew nomination.  

That said, I do have serious reservations regarding Mr. Lew that have not been assuaged through the committee’s consideration of this appointment.  In the end, I hope that he will prove me wrong.  

For example, I strongly disagree with Mr. Lew on some significant policy issues – most notably, his decision to backtrack from the Administration’s previous position on the need for entitlement reform and his belief in the need for higher taxes.  

Ultimately, I hope we end up with the Jack Lew of the Clinton Administration, not just another acolyte of the Obama White House.  I hope we get a Treasury Secretary willing to work with the other side of the aisle, to put our nation first in order to confront the challenges facing us today.  

If Mr. Lew is that kind of Treasury Secretary, then I think we can work together to accomplish some great things for this country.  But if Mr. Lew is committed to playing the same partisan games that have gone on for the better part of the last four years, then we’re going to have serious difficulties getting anything done.

I hope that won’t be the case.

In addition, as my questions during the hearing demonstrated, I believe that Mr. Lew has been less than forthcoming about his time at Citigroup and NYU.  Indeed, after extensive questioning, we still know very little about these areas of his record. This is problematic and I plan to go into these concerns more fully when the nomination is debated on the floor.  

Furthermore, I am deeply concerned about the general lack of responsiveness from the Obama Administration to legitimate questions that I and other members of the Committee have asked.  Sometimes, we get no answers at all, and that is entirely unacceptable, as I have said all too many times from this very spot.    

Mr. Chairman, I expect the committee will report the Lew nomination today and, once again, I intend to vote in favor of doing so.  However, as I stated, I have significant concerns that I hope will be addressed by greater responsiveness and transparency from the administration.
I hope you will continue to work with me to address these concerns. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  

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