Schumer Unveils Power Move To Fast-Track Biden’s Cabinet Nominees

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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on the Senate floor on Monday that the Senate should kickstart the confirmation process for Biden’s Cabinet nominees before the president-elect’s January swearing-in. Schumer discussed past pre-inauguration hearings for president-elects’ nominees and sharply criticized the Republican rush to go after Biden’s picks after spending years following along with the Trump administration’s just about every whim. As Schumer put it, “‘President-elect Biden’s slate of intended nominees provides a stark contrast to the caliber of nominees advanced by the current Trump administration.”

As for the prospect of pre-inauguration Senate hearings for Biden’s nominees, Schumer commented, in part, as follows:

‘Everyone knows that the Senate plays a pivotal role in confirming a new president’s Cabinet. In the midst of this once-in-a-century crisis, it’s imperative the next administration can count on the Senate to confirm its Cabinet without delay, so hearings on President-elect Biden’s nominees should begin in January, immediately after the Georgia run-off elections… so that key Cabinet officials can be confirmed on January 20 and soon thereafter, which is traditional for a new president.’

Watch his comments below:

The two Senate elections set for early January in Georgia will determine control of the chamber. If Democrats win both races — which definitely seems possible, considering Biden’s own recent win in the state — then the chamber would be 50-50, but vice presidents are tasked with breaking ties. With Biden in the White House, the vice president would be, of course, Kamala Harris, herself a soon-to-be former Senator from California. In Georgia, Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler are running against Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, respectively. Republican claims that the presidential election was rigged have come back to haunt the party — at a recent Georgia event, Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel faced Republicans who preemptively questioned the Senate elections, suggesting that GOP voters may be considering sitting out over false fraud concerns.

Biden’s slate of publicly revealed nominees includes Janet Yellen for Treasury Secretary, Tony Blinken for Secretary of State — and, among others, Neera Tanden for chief of the Office of Management and Budget. Drew Brandewie, a spokesperson for Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), has already petulantly publicly insisted that Tanden “stands zero chance of being confirmed” because of “an endless stream of disparaging comments about the Republican Senators’ whose votes she’ll need.”