US House passes bill to audit Federal Reserve
The US Federal Reserve System serves as a central bank and monitors banking practices.
The US House of Representatives has overwhelmingly approved legislation to audit the Federal Reserve, the central banking system of the United States.
On Wednesday, the Republican-controlled House voted 333 to 92 in favor of the “Audit the Fed” bill that would authorize the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to audit the Federal Reserve’s board of governors and banks within one year and present a report to Congress on the findings.
Presently the GAO is severely restricted in the conduct of such audits.
In 2012, a version of the legislation sponsored by former Representative Ron Paul was approved by the House by a vote of 327 to 98.
The Texas Republican had proposed similar legislation back in 1983, but it failed to gain much support at the time.
The Obama administration has given the Federal Reserve new powers to oversee the financial system and regulate it, but Paul believes there should be more transparency on the side of the government.
Representative Paul Broun said the bill would make the system at the central bank more transparent.
“This is a vital piece of legislation that will help to usher in a new era of transparency in this nation’s monetary policy,” said Broun, the bill’s sponsor. “The Federal Reserve is a creation of Congress, and it must therefore be subject to the oversight and regulation of Congress.”
Representative Thomas Massie urged the Federal Reserve to make its system more open to the public.
“Since its inception, the Federal Reserve has always operated in the shadows, without sufficient scrutiny or oversight of its operations,” Massie said.
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