Gary Cohn Subjects Larry Kudlow To Extreme Vetting

Trump economic adviser apparently resistant to ideological extremes.

Larry Kudlow has been right about some things and he's been wrong about some things. Whatever your politics, you have to give him credit for his call to buy the dip after Trump's surprise electoral victory. But you might also weigh that against Kudlow's lengthy record of goofs, like pronouncing in December 2007, “there’s no recession coming.”


Whatever the reason, Kudlow apparently didn't make the grade for Trump economic adviser and former Lloyd Blankfein BFF Gary Cohn, who has reportedly blocked the CNBC contributor from gaining entry into the White House's Council of Economic Advisers. From Politico's Morning Money:

Quite a bit of buzz around the delay in the administration naming a Council of Economic Advisers chairman after several names including AEI's Kevin Hassett and commentator Larry Kudlow were floated for the job. Kudlow is out, evidently a casualty of objections from National Economic Council Director and former Goldman Sachs president Gary Cohn. Hassett could still get the gig but it's been weeks now since his appointment seemed imminent.

Kudlow, who invariably reminds whatever audience he happens to hold that he once served in Reagan's administration, must be crushed. He fell in love with Trump's economic platform at first sight. “When he put out a tax-reform plan . . . I looked at it, read it, and thought, whoa! He’s slashing the corporate tax!” Kudlow said.

On a personal level, there are obvious questions of cultural fit between the gregarious Cohn, who tends to speak with his loins, and the relatively haughty Kudlow, who shudders at the thought of a simple bro-grab between consenting males. And Cohn might share some of Kudlow's free-market political proclivities, but evidently not his fervor, preferring the less ideologically rigid Goldman-style politics that has found a surprising foothold in the Trump administration. From New York Magazine, back in December:

According to sources, Cohn has upset right-wing members of the White House economic team by attempting to block the appointment of CNBC commentator and avowed supply-sider Larry Kudlow to chair the Council of Economic Advisers, based on Cohn’s concerns that Kudlow is too ideological.

Because if there's one thing that Gary Cohn has learned from his time in Trump's White House so far, it's the importance of resisting ideological extremes. On that note, here's the last time we saw Cohn, standing by as Trump signed his travel ban.