The administration of President Joe Biden is resorting to leaning on support from Asian Americans to help push through the confirmation of Neera Tanden. Tanden is currently Biden’s nominee to serve as the budget chief. The confirmation process has not gone smoothly for Tanden and the Biden team. Most signs point to the possibility that she will not be confirmed by the Senate.
Advocating for Tanden
Reports are beginning to surface that advocacy groups are calling various Senate offices. They’re calling the opposition to the confirmation “structural racism” and “institutional racism.” The daughter of Indian immigrants, Tanden has gained favor with the Asian American community, spurring the Biden team to lean into this support as a means to push through the confirmation.
Opposition to Tanden
Tanden has run into issues being confirmed by the more moderate arm of the Democratic Party. Notably, Sen. Joe Manchin initially expressed his opposition to the confirmation. The moderate Democrat from West Virginia cited past offensive tweets by Tanden as a reason to oppose her nomination. Fellow moderate Democrat Sen. Kyrsten Sinema has also expressed concern with the nomination.
As it stands in the Senate now, the Democrats need all 50 of their colleagues to vote for confirmation. If Manchin or Sinema vote down Tanden, the Democrats would need a Republican to cross party lines to make it happen.
What Is Next for Tanden?
If Tanden is not confirmed by the Senate, the Biden administration has other plans to use her knowledge and expertise. According to White House chief of staff Ron Klain, Tanden would be put into a role that does not require the confirmation of the Senate.