Sunday, March 7, 2021

Susan Collins Joins Joe Manchin to Oppose Neera Tanden in Near-Fatal Blow to Nomination

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Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) has said she will oppose President Joe Biden‘s nomination of Neera Tanden to lead the Office of Management and Budget.

It comes after Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) said he would not support her nomination, reducing the chance of her being confirmed to the position by the narrowly-divided Senate.

In a statement reported by Politico Playbook, Collins said: “The Director of OMB is responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of the federal budget and plays a significant role in any Administration’s fiscal and regulatory agenda.

Congress has to be able to trust the OMB director to make countless decisions in an impartial manner, carrying out the letter of the law and congressional intent.

“Neera Tanden has neither the experience nor the temperament to lead this critical agency. Her past actions have demonstrated exactly the kind of animosity that President Biden has pledged to transcend.”

Her statement concluded: “The OMB needs steady, experienced, responsive leadership. I will vote against confirming Ms. Tanden.”

Republicans have spoken in opposition to Tanden over tweets she previously sent taking aim at lawmakers.

The Democrats hold a majority in the Senate but this is razor-thin, with the upper chamber split 50-50. Democrats have a majority thanks to Vice President Kamala Harris, who holds the decisive vote in any tiebreak situations.

After Manchin’s announcement of opposing Tanden, Democrats need at least one Republican to go the other way to cancel this out. Collins was one of those potential Republican votes.

Newsweek has contacted Collins and the White House for comment.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

Neera Tanden at the Senate budget committee
Neera Tanden, nominee for Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), testifies during a Senate Committee on the Budget hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on February 10, 2021.
ANNA MONEYMAKER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

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