'PRETENDING TO BE OFFENDED'
‘Definition of Cowardice’: Experts Blast Portman for Attacking Biden OMB Pick: Mean Tweets Not ‘Valid Reason’ to Block
Neera Tanden once tweeted that “vampires have more heart than Ted Cruz”
Political and government experts are blasting Senate Republicans, especially Ohio’s Sen. Rob Portman, for trying to block the confirmation of President Joe Biden’s pick to be the next Director of the powerful Office of Management and Budget, Neera Tanden.
Tanden, president of the progressive think tank Center for American Progress, is accused of posting some mean and “salty” tweets over the years about Republicans.
“I deeply regret and apologize for my language and some of my past language,” Tanden told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Monday, as Politico reported. “I know I have to earn the trust of senators across the board.”
Senator Rob Portman during her confirmation hearing read aloud some of the tweets criticizing Republicans, including Senators Susan Collins of Maine, Tom Cotton of Arkansas, Ted Cruz of Texas and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
“Just to mention a few of the thousands of negative public statements,” Portman accused, “you wrote that Susan Collins is the worst, that Tom Cotton is a fraud, that vampires have more heart than Ted Cruz. You called leader McConnell: Moscow Mitch and Voldemort, and on and on.”
Ethics in government expert Walter Shaub, the former head of the Office of Government Ethics, on Tuesday tweeted, “Maybe I’m not the most objective observer of the issue, but ‘your tweets about us were mean’ doesn’t seem like a valid reason not to confirm a qualified candidate.”
He offered up a “compromise”:
Here’s a compromise: If they want, they can utter 280-character insults back at her during the hearing, but they should still confirm.
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) February 9, 2021
Shaub is far from the only one criticizing Portman and other Republican Senators, who as many observed, spent more than four years pretending to not be aware of all the “mean” and offensive tweets now-former President Donald Trump had posted, until his account was shut down for violating Twitter policies.
The Save Journalism Project’s cofounder:
The “I have not seen the tweet” crowd just published a coffee table book of Neera’s tweets. I love it
— Laura Bassett (@LEBassett) February 9, 2021
The definition of cowardice is Rob Portman and his Republican buddies spending four years ignoring tweets from the president of the United States but pretending to be offended by tweets from Neera Tanden. But sure tv anchors, tell us what a good guy Portman is.
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) February 9, 2021
Daily KOS Political director:
So Rob Portman is kvetching about Neera Tanden’s salty tweets, which somehow he’s had the time to pay attention to. Yet when Trump was tweeting outrageous stuff, he found a way to studiously ignore it—see below (via @CahnEmily at @AmerIndependent) https://t.co/YD5i3JN8U1 https://t.co/xybJA1kAcN
— David Nir (@DavidNir) February 9, 2021
Former Obama Senior Advisor:
No one covering Neera Tanden’s confrination hearing needs to pretend these Republican are anything other than full of shit when it comes to her tweets.
— Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) February 9, 2021
White House reporter for The Washington Post:
Democratic aide sends this storyhttps://t.co/8jhu5hbVxk
— Jeff Stein (@JStein_WaPo) February 9, 2021
Republican senators who used to say they hadn’t seen Trump’s tweet that was read aloud 17 times on CNN every hour are suddenly going to be intimately familiar with years-old tweets from Biden nominees.
— ryan teague beckwith (@ryanbeckwith) November 30, 2020
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