Neera Tanden’s road to becoming the confirmed head of the White House Office of Management and Budget has taken a crack, with Republican Senators Mitt Romney and Susan Collins confirming that they will vote alongside Democratic Senator Joe Manchin to deny Tanden’s confirmation in the Senate.
Tanden’s road became rocky last week after Sen. Manchin confirmed he would not vote for her confirmation.
Senators Romney and Collins were seen as viable Republicans for her to gain the one vote that she needs from that side, now, she faces an incredibly steep walk to confirmation.
How did she get here?
Neera Tanden became President Joe Biden’s pick to be the head of the OMB, with the full support of the President and of his Press Secretary, Jen Psaki.
Psaki cited Tanden’s personal qualifications for the job, using her race as one of them.
She stated that Tanden would become the first Asian-American woman to become head of the OMB, whilst supporting her decision to back the nomination by citing Tanden’s personal experiences, that being the fact she has benefited from numerous federal programs when she was a child.
However, Tanden is now on a rocky road to confirmation, after West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat, stated he would not vote for her to be confirmed.
Manchin made the decision last week, citing the numerous statements Tanden has made regarding Republican and Democratic Senators.
He stated that after careful consideration of the various statements she has made publicly, more so on her Twitter account, that he will not be supporting her confirmation as he believes her ‘overly partisan’ statements would bring to life a ‘toxic and detrimental’ impact on the working relationship between Congress and the OMB.
With Sen. Manchin now ruling out his support, Tanden will need the rest of the Democrats to vote for her confirmation, alongside a single Republican.
However, that ask could now prove to be even more challenging.
Why have Romney and Collins ruled out support?
Senators Mitt Romney and Susan Collins have been known over the last couple of years to break away from the Republican whip, siding with the Democrats in some instances.
However, they will not be continuing this trend when the time comes for Tanden’s confirmation, with Sen. Collins confirming she would not have her support before Sen. Romney declared the same.
Collins cited in a statement on Monday morning that Tanden lacks the ‘experience and temperament’ to lead the OMB, making reference to her past actions and statements, just like Manchin did.
She stated that Congress needs to have confidence in the OMB to fulfil their duty, and she claimed that Tanden deleting various tweets in order to cover her back shows that she might have an issue with transparency.
Sen. Romney agreed with these statements, claiming that it is very hard to respect a leader in that position after they have sent out ‘nearly a thousand mean tweets’.
Tanden now faces an uphill battle to get her confirmation through the Senate, with more Republicans expected to come out in voice against her.