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Photo: Lael Brainard Lael Brainard

Lael Brainard may face scrutiny over her dovish comments about China when she was a top Obama administration official, if President-elect Joe Biden chooses her to be Treasury Secretary, but people familiar with her work said she took a more aggressive approach in private.

Now, as the Federal Reserve governor emerges as a leading candidate for the post, her past remarks risk painting her as weak on Beijing. That is a potential vulnerability in a political climate that has become more adversarial, fueled by growing trade imbalances and President Donald Trump’s more combative approach to China.

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