WATCH: Katie Porter Dresses Mnuchin Down at Hearing for ‘Play-Acting’ as a Lawyer
Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA) grilled Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin Wednesday during a House committee hearing on the Treasury Department’s coronavirus pandemic response — accusing him of “play-acting” as a lawyer.
Porter began by asking Jerome Powell, the Federal Reserve Chair, if the economic crisis caused by the epidemic is over, to which he admitted it is not.
Porter pointed out that Mnuchin disagrees with Powell on the current state of the economy, and even wants to ban the fed from using any more of the $455 billion dollars that Congress set aside in the CARES Act.
The representative revealed that Mnuchin wrote to Powell, requesting that the billions be returned to the general fund because the markets are now stable despite the ongoing pandemic.
“It’s highly concerning that the two people tasked with stabilizing our economy do not agree on whether the markets are stable,” Porter said. “But it actually doesn’t matter what either of you two think, because Secretary Mnuchin simply does not have the authority to recall the $455 billion.”
Porter noted that the CARES Act states that any money left over from the relief bills will be sent back to the general fund on January 1, 2026, and no sooner.
“Is today the year 2026, yes or no?” Porter asked, earning some criticism from Mnuchin who said it was a “ridiculous” question before yelling at her for wasting everyone’s time.
“Well Secretary Mnuchin, I think it’s ridiculous that you’re play-acting to be a lawyer when you have no legal degree,” Porter added.
Mnuchin then explained that he has several lawyers advising him at the Department of Treasury.
“Secretary Mnuchin, are you in fact a lawyer?” Porter continued to push.
“I do not have a legal degree, I have lawyers that report to me,” Mnuchin conceded.
Watch above, via C-SPAN.
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