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Thousands sign petition against Larry Summers as World Bank president

Online petition against Larry Summers being nominated as the next World Bank president gains traction.

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Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and Larry Summers talk before President Barack Obama signs the middle-class tax cut bill in December 2010 in Washington DC. (Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty Images)

In its first 24 hours, an online petition against Larry Summers as the next World Bank president got 37,000 signatures, Dealbreaker reported.

That boils down to one new signature every two-and-a-half seconds, Huffington Post noted.

The petition against his World Bank candidacy from UltraViolet, a group aiming to "expand women's rights and combat sexism everywhere - from politics and government to media and pop culture."

"Summers has a long history of making sexist comments--like saying girls don't have the genetic gifts to do well in math and science like boys do," the UltraViolet's petition said. "The World Bank has a lot of power over the education and training of women and girls in developing countries. We need a nominee who believes girls have the same potential as boys."

Summers hasn't officially been nominated for the job, but Bloomberg News reported the former US Treasury Secretary is among several candidates President Obama is considering to lead the World Bank when Robert Zoellick's term expires later this year.

More from GlobalPost: World Bank president Robert Zoellick to step down in June

But Summers, who has led Harvard, advised Obama and taught and later worked with Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, is a controversial figure.

Huffington Post pointed to one of his most famous gaffes, a suggestion "that women might lack an 'intrinsic aptitude' for science and engineering."

More recently, Summers, one of Obama's key economic advisors during the financial crisis, has faced questions regarding his close connections to Wall Street and for failing to push aggressively enough for financial reform.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120224/web-petition-against-larry-summers