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Trump's Fed picks pan liberals, praise Trump

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Herman Cain, the former pizza chain executive picked by President Donald Trump for a policy seat on the Federal Reserve, panned ‘liberal lunatics’ and socialism in Monday’s installment of his eponymous show on Facebook.

FILE PHOTO: Former republican presidential candidate and Georgia business man Herman Cain speaks during the Southern Republican Leadership Conference at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina January 19, 2012. REUTERS/Chris Keane/File Photo

He said he is being attacked as a conservative but would put on “the full armor of God” to protect himself from critics he called “the devil.”

Stephen Moore, an economic commentator and another of Trump’s picks for the Fed’s Board of Governors, predicted on one radio talk show an “overwhelming landslide reelection” for Trump if the economy stays strong, but warned “we need to make sure the Fed isn’t pulling the money supply out of the economy and I’m a little nervous about that.”

“I want to be the growth guy over at the Fed,” Moore said in a separate radio interview on Monday. “I want to be able to accommodate these growth policies that Trump has put in place that have created the best economy in the world, probably.”

As the two men undergo what Moore says could be months of background checks before their expected nominations to the world’s most important central bank, neither appeared concerned about safeguarding the partisan neutrality that Fed officials say is critical to effective monetary policymaking.

Indeed, both displayed their loyalty to Trump and support for his economic policies and reelection.

Cain continues to allow his name and photograph to be used in campaigns by the political fundraising group he founded whose main aim is to ensure that Trump is reelected.

Trump has railed against the Fed and his own pick for the central bank’s chairman, Jerome Powell, after a series of four interest rate increases last year that Trump claims have held back an economy that otherwise would be growing like a “rocket ship.”

On Sunday, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow defended the Trump’s picks, saying the president has “every right” to put people who share his philosophy on the central bank’s policysetting panel.

Both men have come under intense scrutiny since their nominations.

Cain, who dropped out of a presidential bid in 2012 amid allegations of sexual harassment he calls false, said on Monday he is the victim of “hack attacks” by people who say “negative, unfair, insane things” about him.

“Because I ran as a Republican for president and the United States Senate, and because I am an outspoken voice of conservatism, an outspoken voice of the Constitution and the laws, I’m being attacked,” Cain said in the video Monday.

Cain said his experience as a director at the Kansas City Fed in the 1990s helps qualify him for the position on the Board of Governors. Regional Fed bank directors do not take part in monetary policymaking.

Both Cain and Moore have expressed support for Trump’s economic policies and Moore has said he would support a rate cut to boost growth.

“I think this boom can continue for another three, four, five years if Trump gets elected, and we keep these policies in place,” Moore told radio talk show host Frank Beckmann. “This is not a sugar high, this is the result of an agenda that is focused on American workers and American businesses.”

Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Leslie Adler & Simon Cameron-Moore