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Neera Tanden Committee Vote Postponed as Support for Confirmation Wanes

Neera Tanden, director of the Office and Management and Budget (OMB) nominee for President Joe Biden, speaks during a confirmation hearing in Washington, D.C., February 9, 2021. (Ting Shen/Reuters)

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) and Budget Committees were set to vote Wednesday on Neera Tanden’s nomination to become director of the Office of Management and Budget, but announced last minute that the meetings would be postponed.

The delay comes as Tanden’s confirmation has been imperiled by Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a moderate Democrat who said he would use his critical vote to oppose the confirmation over her “overtly partisan statements.”

Tanden, who is president of the Center for American Progress, deleted more than 1,000 insulting tweets about lawmakers ahead of her nomination.

Without Manchin’s support, and with the Senate evenly divided between the parties, Tanden would need backing from at least one Republican.

However, senators Susan Collins (R., Maine) and Mitt Romney (R., Utah) signaled on Monday that they would not support the confirmation either.

“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,” Collins said in a statement on Monday. “Neera Tanden has neither the experience nor the temperament to lead this critical agency.”

Yet the White House has continued to back Tanden, with White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Wednesday defending the nominee as a “leading policy expert who brings critical qualifications to the table during this time of unprecedented crisis.”

Psaki added that Tanden has a “broad spectrum of support” and a “strong record of working with both parties.”

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