"More Than Half of Americans Want Fed Reined In or Abolished"
The survey, conducted Dec. 4-7, also shows deep skepticism, especially among Republicans, over the Fed’s Nov. 3 announcement that it would buy bonds in an attempt to bring down unemployment and prevent deflation. More than half say the purchases won’t help the economy.
The policy, known as quantitative easing, was the target of criticism in Washington and overseas. That prompted Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke to appear in an interview on CBS television’s “60 Minutes” program on Dec. 5 to defend his actions.
Across the Spectrum
Americans across the political spectrum say the Fed shouldn’t retain its current structure of independence. Asked if the central bank should be more accountable to Congress, left independent or abolished entirely, 39 percent said it should be held more accountable and 16 percent that it should be abolished. Only 37 percent favor the status quo.
In a previous poll, conducted Oct. 7-10, 35 percent of Americans said the Fed should be radically overhauled, while 8 percent said it should be abolished.
Republicans and independents are more likely to support ending the Fed, with 19 percent of independents, 16 percent of Republicans, and 12 percent of Democrats wanting to do away with the central bank. Among those who identify themselves as supporters of the Tea Party movement, which wants to rein in government, 21 percent want to abolish the Fed. . . .