Trump pick Stephen Moore drops out of Federal Reserve race

Stephen Moore

"Of all the ideas I've ever heard in my lifetime, that's one of the stupidest", Stephen Moore said in a Bloomberg Television interview Thursday in Washington.

"Steve Moore, a great pro-growth economist and a truly fine person, has chose to withdraw from the Fed process", Trump wrote on Twitter on Thursday. "I've asked Steve to work with me toward future economic growth in our Country".

Senate Majority Whip John Thune was among the GOP lawmakers who grew skeptical about Moore's chances after decades-old comments resurfaced in which Moore made disparaging and sexist remarks about women involved in sports.

He also disagreed with Trump on the need for a one-percent cut to the prime interest rate, prompting some business observers to speculate he would be "fired" by Trump via tweet nearly an hour before it happened.

Moore's withdrawal comes within weeks of former presidential candidate Herman Cain backing out of consideration for serving on the Fed.

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Earlier Thursday, Moore had told Bloomberg TV that he was "all in" and that he expected to be nominated within three weeks. Moore wondered why none of his critics tried challenging him on his economic proposals, presumably in a state of amnesia for all those times his ideas were challenged when he used to be a contributor on CNN. "If people are looking at things I was writing 25 years ago and looking through my divorce records and it just was - it was too hard for us".

More recently, Moore called for the firing of Fed Chairman Jerome Powell after the central bank raised interest rates in December and, like Trump, he has called for rate cuts this year.

There were also concerns about his views on interest-rate policy, given as recently as September 2015 he called for eliminating the United States central bank. Moore wrote that women should not be allowed to referee men's NCAA basketball games and that women earning more than men "could be disruptive to family stability". Moore told the network that the columns were a "spoof". A federal tax lien filed in the circuit court for Montgomery County, Maryland, where Moore owns a house, says that the government won a judgment against Moore for US$75,328.80. Moore has said that he took a "mistaken deduction" and that he's subsequently overpaid his taxes. He was also held in contempt of court in 2013 for failing to pay more than $300,000 in child support to his ex-wife.

"He wouldn't be a good friend of mine if he didn't (respect women)", said Betsy Hart, who worked with Moore at the conservative Heritage Foundation and has socialized with him regularly since then.

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