Rep. Thomas Massie Speaks in Support of Audit the Fed

Tonight, the House of Representatives debated H.R. 24, 'Ron Paul's Audit the Fed' and Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky) along with bill sponsor Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga) both spoke in favor if this important legislation.

Watch Thomas Massie's speech below:


Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of my friend and colleague Congressman Paul Broun’s Federal Reserve Transparency Act, otherwise known as “Audit the Fed.” Our mutual friend and predecessor, Congressman Ron Paul, first introduced this bill back in 1983. His often-lonely voice and courageous efforts to shed light on the secretive and harmful actions of the Federal Reserve have finally paid off over 30 years later. In July of 2012, Congressman Paul’s “Audit the Fed” bill passed the House of Representatives by an overwhelming vote of 327 to 98. Sadly, it has yet to receive a vote in the Senate.

As Congressman Paul stated here on the House floor in 2011 in words that remain current and relevant today in 2014,

“Throughout its nearly 100-year history, the Federal Reserve has presided over the near-complete destruction of the United States dollar. Since 1913 the dollar has lost over 98% of its purchasing power, aided and abetted by the Federal Reserve’s loose monetary policy. How long will we as a Congress stand idly by while hard-working Americans see their savings eaten away by inflation? Only big-spending politicians and politically favored bankers benefit from inflation.
Since its inception, the Federal Reserve has always operated in the shadows, without sufficient scrutiny or oversight of its operations. While the conventional excuse is that this is intended to reduce the Fed’s susceptibility to political pressures, the reality is that the Fed acts as a foil for the government. Whenever you question the Fed about the strength of the dollar, they will refer you to the Treasury, and vice versa. The Federal Reserve has, on the one hand, many of the privileges of government agencies, while retaining benefits of private organizations, such as being largely insulated from Freedom of Information Act requests.
The Federal Reserve can enter into agreements with foreign central banks and foreign governments, and the GAO is prohibited from auditing these agreements. Why should a government-established agency, whose police force has federal law enforcement powers, and whose notes have legal tender status in this country, be allowed to enter into agreements with foreign powers and foreign banking institutions with no oversight? Particularly because the Fed has operated swap lines with foreign central banks and provided hundreds of billions of dollars of bailouts to foreign commercial banks, the Fed’s negotiations with the European Central Bank, the Bank of International Settlements, and other foreign institutions should face increased scrutiny, most especially because of their significant effect on foreign policy. Given the currency crisis in Europe and the prospect of the Fed propping up foreign governments or bailing out American banks invested in European debt, this issue is of especially pressing concern.”

I urge my colleagues to vote in favor of this bill. It’s time to force the Federal Reserve to operate by the same standards of transparency and accountability to the taxpayers that we should demand of all government agencies.

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