Cain, a 2012 presidential candidate, has to decide on his own whether or not to withdraw from consideration, economic adviser Larry Kudlow said late Tuesday from the White House.
“At the end of the day, it will probably be up to Herman Cain if he wants to stay in that process or not,” Kudlow said to reporters. “As far as we are concerned he is still in the process and it is proceeding.”
Cain said in a video posted on Facebook earlier this month that he faced a “cumbersome” vetting process for the Fed seat, suggesting he may be considering withdrawing. His campaign for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination ended in 2011 after he was accused of sexual harassment when he led the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s and of infidelity.
Republican senators have signaled there isn’t enough support to confirm Cain for the job. Trump has privately said he knows Cain would have trouble getting confirmed but wants to wait for the FBI to finish its background check before he makes his decision on whether to formally nominate him, people familiar with the matter have said.
Asked last week whether Cain’s nomination was “safe,” Trump told reporters: “Herman will make that determination.”
Politico reported last week that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed there is a “lack of enthusiasm” among Senate Republicans to install Cain.
GOP Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah, Cory Gardner of Colorado, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Kevin Cramer of North Dakota have all come out as opposed to Cain. West Virginia’s Joe Manchin, a red-state Democrat, also has come out against Cain, likely leaving no path for a 51-vote simple majority confirmation.
“I don’t think I can. I don’t think he’s qualified for the position,” Manchin told Politico.
Moore is a long-time Trump supporter but has faced heavy scrutiny over $75,000 in taxes and penalties he reportedly owes to the IRS.
“Stephen Moore is in the process we support him,” Kudlow said. “We support Herman Cain. We will just let things play out in the vetting.”
CNBC reported Tuesday that some past writings have come back to bite Moore.
In a 2003 National Review Online column, Moore joked that he had deployed an “ingenious child rearing technique” of taping “gruesome pictures” of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s dead, mangled sons on the family refrigerator with the written message: “THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS TO KIDS THAT GROW UP TO BE DEMOCRATS!”
In 2004, Moore wrote another National Review Online column, a “Happy Christmas” letter that likewise was clearly intended to be humorous. In the piece, Moore griped about his young sons’ poor athletic performance and his then-3-year-old boy being diagnosed with “low-muscle tone” by a pediatrician.
“He might as well have told us that [the boy] has AIDS,” Moore wrote.
McConnell offered some blunt advice to the president regarding future Fed nominees.
“There are two things the administration ought to consider before nominating someone: first a background check and second, likelihood of confirmation. And generally better to check that up in advance before you send that nomination up,” McConnell said. “There are a number of members … who had some reservations about some of the names that have been mentioned.”