(RepublicanWire.org) – Senator Bill Cassidy repeatedly told Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen during a Senate Finance Committee hearing that President Joe Biden has not been willing to meet with a bipartisan group of senators to address problems with Social Security.
The Republican senator accused Yellen of lying when she said Biden was willing to meet with Republicans to discuss Social Security.
“Why doesn’t the President care?” Cassidy asked.
“He cares very deeply – ” Yellen began to answer.
“Then where is his plan?” Cassidy persisted.
“He stands ready to work with – ” Yellen offered.
“That’s a lie,” Cassidy said.
Yellen later finished saying that Biden stands ready to work with Congress to address future shortfalls in Social Security, which Cassidy dismissed as “empirically” not true.
The exchange was a departure from the decorum usually often upheld in the Senate, and the respect typically afforded to Yellen, a former Federal Reserve chair.
“Accusing witnesses of lying is over the line,” the committee’s Democratic chairman, Ron Wyden, admonished Cassidy.
The senator from Louisiana replied he wasn’t accusing the Treasury secretary of lying and understood she was repeating what she had been told.
Later, another Republican senator, Ron Johnson, of Wisconsin, exhibited impatience with Yellen. Johnson asked Yellen how much the total deficits were over the 10-year period covered in Biden’s budget. When Yellen paused to look at some documents, Johnson quipped, “You don’t know that off the top of your head?”