The Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs is postponing its Wednesday confirmation hearing for Neera Tanden, President Joe Biden’s pick to be the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), after Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) announced he will vote against her, based on her record of posting mean tweets.
Axios, first reporting the news, calls it “a potential death knell” for Tanden’s confirmation, although it could give the Biden White House time to try to shore up support among Republican Senators.
Tanden would be the first woman of color to head OMB.
Manchin’s stunning announcement Friday has led to three Republicans jumping on board, also announcing their opposition.
None of the opposition is on qualifications – Tanden, a policy expert has led the Center for American Progress for nearly a decade, and worked in both the Clinton and Obama White Houses.
“We are postponing the business meeting because members are asking for more time to consider the nominee,” an unnamed committee aide told Axios. “The president deserves to have a team in place that he wants, and we’re going to work with our members to figure out the best path forward.”
But many Democrats see Manchin’s opposition as nothing more than sexism, misogyny, and racism. He has voted for far less qualified candidates with far greater issues than Tanden, all of whom happened to be men, and mostly white men. Among them, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was not only credibly accused of sexual assault, but engaged a shocking on-camera attack promising revenge during his confirmation hearing.
“Other supporters have accused Tanden’s opponents of hypocrisy, noting Manchin and many Republican senators voted to confirm nominees of President Trump who also had posted caustic tweets,” Axios adds.
Manchin followed up his opposition to Tanden with a suggestion he might not support Biden’s nominee to head the Dept. of the Interior, a sitting U.S. Congresswoman who is Native American, Deb Haaland.
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