WASHINGTON -- Former Treasury Secretary Lawrence H. Summers has withdrawn his name from consideration to be the next chairman of the Federal Reserve chairman, President Obama said Sunday.
Summers had been a leading contender to replace current Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, whose term expires in January, and in recent weeks had appeared to be the front-runner.
His withdrawal opens the door for the other leading contender, Janet L. Yellen, the Fed's current vice chair. If nominated and confirmed, she who would be the first woman to head the central bank.
Summers, a former top economic advisor to Obama, had faced strong opposition from many Democrats. He is known for being difficult to work with and has been criticized by liberals for his support for some financial-industry deregulation in the late 1990s when he was in the Clinton administration.