By Dave Clarke
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Senator Ted Kaufman wasselected Monday to chair the congressional panel overseeingthe $700 billion financial sector bailout program -- a dayafter the program officially expired.
Last week Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid picked Kaufman,a critic of Wall Street, to fill the seat vacated by ElizabethWarren, who left the panel to become a special adviser toPresident Obama charged with helping set up the new ConsumerFinancial Protection Bureau.
Warren served as the chair of the Congressional OversightPanel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) and onMonday fellow committee members voted to have Kaufman take overthat role.
"Continued oversight of the TARP is serious business, and Iam eager to get started," Kaufman said in a release.
As of Oct. 3 the TARP program can no longer distributefunding, but the oversight panel will remain in businessthrough April 3, 2011. It issues monthly reports examining howthe program has been run.
Kaufman joined the Senate in January 2009 after beingappointed by then-Delaware Governor Ruth Ann Minner to fill theseat of Joe Biden, who had become vice president.
At the time Kaufman, who was a longtime aide to Biden, saidhe had no intention of serving more than two years. and hisSenate replacement will be decided by voters next month. (Reporting by Dave Clarke, Editing by Gerald E. McCormick)