White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain said Wednesday that Neera Tanden will work under the Biden administration even if the Senate does not confirm her nomination.
The story: Klain expressed confidence that despite the opposition to her nomination, the Senate will eventually confirm her as director of the Office of Management and Budget. He told MSNBC host Joy Reid that if the effort to appoint her to the position fails, the White House will find another role for Tanden in the administration that does not need the approval of the Senate.
“Let me be clear: We’re going to get Neera Tanden confirmed. That’s what we’re working for, and she will prove her critics wrong as an outstanding budget director that works with people on both sides of the aisle. That’s what I think her record truly shows,” Klain told Reid.
But Klain also said that if Tanden isn’t confirmed for the position, the Biden administration will find her a place “that doesn’t require Senate confirmation.”
Worth noting: Reid suggested that Republican’s opposition to Tangen’s nomination is politically-motivated. She argued that the GOP party “care about winning this sort of fights that are more about messaging for them.”
“Targeting these, you know, women people of color is all on message for them,” she asserted.
She then put forward the idea of President Biden appointing Tanden as acting OMB director.
How we got here: Tanden drew scrutiny over past tweets in which she targeted certain lawmakers, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), whom she compared to Voldemort, the villain in the Harry Potter franchise.
Tanden apologized for the tweet earlier this month, but last week, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-VW) announced that he would vote against her confirmation. At least four other Republicans joined Manchin in telling the public that Tanden does not have their vote.
While some Republicans were expected to oppose Tanden’s confirmation, it was Manchin’s declaration that cast doubt on the success of the vote on the Senate floor. This is because the Senate is evenly divided between the parties, with Democrats only holding the majority because of Vice President Kamala Harris. If all lawmakers vote along partisan lines, with Manching joining the GOP, then Tanden will not be confirmed for the position.
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Author: Penka Arsova
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