Tanden withdraws nomination as Biden budget chief

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Neera TandenNeera TandenMurkowski says no decision after Tanden meeting The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Trump teases on 2024 run This week: Senate takes up coronavirus relief after minimum wage setback MORE has withdrawn her nomination to head President BidenJoe BidenSenate Democrats negotiating changes to coronavirus bill Rural Americans are the future of the clean energy economy — policymakers must to catch up WHO official says it’s ‘premature’ to think pandemic will be over by end of year MORE‘s White House budget office after her prospects of Senate confirmation flamed out.

The White House made the announcement on Tuesday evening, capping a tumultuous few weeks surrounding the fight over her nomination.

Tanden, who would have been the first woman of color to lead the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), faced scrutiny over mean tweets she had written about Republicans and progressive Democrats alike in her previous role heading the Center for American Progress think tank.

“I have accepted Neera Tanden’s request to withdraw her name from nomination for Director of the Office of Management and Budget,” Biden said in a statement. “I have the utmost respect for her record of accomplishment, her experience and her counsel, and I look forward to having her serve in a role in my Administration. She will bring valuable perspective and insight to our work.”

Tanden is Biden’s first Cabinet nominee to be withdrawn from consideration, making this an early blow for the president. The White House spent the past two weeks insisting there was a path to confirmation for Tanden and vowed to fight for her, even as her prospects dimmed.

Tanden is expected to be appointed to an administration role that does not require Senate confirmation.

A handful of names have circulated as potential replacements for Tanden. Shalanda Young, who on Wednesday underwent a confirmation hearing to be the deputy OMB director, is seen as the most likely nominee.

In her controversial tweets, many of which were deleted in recent months, Tanden compared Sen. Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellJudiciary Committee greenlights Garland’s AG nomination This week: Senate takes up coronavirus relief after minimum wage setback Juan Williams: Hypocrisy runs riot in GOP MORE (R-Ky.) to Voldemort and Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSupreme Court faces landmark challenge on voting rights Trump: ‘I can’t imagine’ any Republican would beat me in 2024 primary if I run Poll shows most GOP voters back Trump 2024 bid MORE (R-Texas) to a vampire and insinuated that Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersOn The Money: Senators push for changes as chamber nears vote on .9T relief bill | Warren offers bill to create wealth tax Sanders vows to force vote on minimum wage No. 2 Senate Democrat shoots down overruling parliamentarian on minimum wage MORE (I-Vt.) benefited from Russian hacking in the 2016 election.

In two confirmation hearings, she repeatedly apologized for the tweets and promised to strike a more collegial tone as a member of the administration.

Her nomination began to unravel when Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinSenate Democrats negotiating changes to coronavirus bill Murkowski says no decision after Tanden meeting Ocasio-Cortez: wage only ‘socialist’ to those in ‘dystopian capitalist nightmare’ MORE (D-W.V.) pulled his support, citing the need for comity. In the evenly divided Senate, that left Tanden reliant on support from centrist Republicans such as Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsSenate Democrats negotiating changes to coronavirus bill On The Money: Senators push for changes as chamber nears vote on .9T relief bill | Warren offers bill to create wealth tax GOP says Ron Klain pulling Biden strings MORE (Maine), who also was a target of Tanden’s tweets. That support was not forthcoming.

Tanden met with Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiMurkowski says no decision after Tanden meeting Green New Deal’s 3 billion ton problem: sourcing technology metals The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Trump teases on 2024 run MORE (R-Alaska) this week in a last-ditch bid by the White House to attract Republican support for her nomination that would be necessary to overcome Manchin’s “no” vote.

Murkowski seemed surprised by the news and said Tuesday evening that she had not yet made up her mind about whether to support Tanden. The White House, she said, had not consulted her before pulling the nomination.

“They never asked,” she said.

“Now, it means that I’m going to have to do the Alaska tutorial 101 all over again with whoever it is that they name,” she said, referring to her Monday meeting with Tanden.

Sanders and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) also had not definitively said how they would vote on Tanden, meaning her nomination could have been doomed even with a “yes” from Murkowski.

Tanden’s defenders said scuttling her nomination dripped of hypocrisy, noting that many of the senators who opposed her had gladly voted for sharp-tongued nominees such as Richard GrenellRichard GrenellJuan Williams: Hypocrisy runs riot in GOP Grenell hints at potential California gubernatorial bid The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by The AIDS Institute – Tanden’s odds plummet to lead OMB MORE as U.S. ambassador to Germany despite derogatory comments about women’s appearances and Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsManchin flexes muscle in 50-50 Senate Udalls: Haaland criticism motivated ‘by something other than her record’ Ocasio-Cortez targets Manchin over Haaland confirmation MORE as attorney general despite comments on race that scuttled his nomination for a federal judgeship in 1986.

They also pointed to regular GOP support for former President TrumpDonald TrumpProsecutors focus Trump Organization probe on company’s financial officer: report WHO official says it’s ‘premature’ to think pandemic will be over by end of year Romney released from hospital after fall over the weekend MORE despite his ongoing habit of incendiary rhetoric, through tweets and otherwise, which demeaned rivals as “crazy,” “little,” “crooked,” “low IQ” and other epithets, including racial ones such as “Pocahontas.”

Some Democrats have also noted that the Biden nominees facing the greatest level of scrutiny are people of color, including Rep. Deb HaalandDeb HaalandPolitics, not racism or sexism, explain opposition to Biden Cabinet nominees OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden returns to Obama-era greenhouse gas calculation | House passes major public lands package | Biden administration won’t defend Trump-era relaxation of bird protections Indigenous groups post billboards urging senators to confirm Deb Haaland MORE (D-N.M.), the nominee to lead the Interior Department, and Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraOvernight Health Care: Senate to vote on .9 trillion relief bill this week | J&J vaccine rollout begins | CDC warns against lifting restrictions Politics, not racism or sexism, explain opposition to Biden Cabinet nominees The Hill’s 12:30 Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden vs. Trump, part II MORE, the nominee for Health and Human Services secretary.

“Is there a pattern here??? Hope they’re using the same standard and not moving goal posts for only certain nominees,” Rep. Grace MengGrace MengPelosi, lawmakers denounce violence against Asian Americans House Democrat calls for demographic breakdown on COVID-19 vaccines Remember Asian American voters MORE (D-N.Y.) tweeted after Manchin came out against the Tanden nomination.

Some senators have already voiced support for Young should she be tapped to lead the agency. Young testified on Tuesday before the Senate Budget Committee.

“You’ll get my support, maybe for both jobs,” Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamJuan Williams: Hypocrisy runs riot in GOP Portman on Trump’s dominance of GOP: Republican Party’s policies are ‘even more popular’ Overnight Defense: Biden sends message with Syria airstrike | US intel points to Saudi crown prince in Khashoggi killing | Pentagon launches civilian-led sexual assault commission MORE (R-S.C.) quipped during the hearing.

In the meantime, the budget office will remain without a confirmed leader. Press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiOvernight Defense: White House defends not punishing MBS after Khashoggi report | Pentagon says one militant killed in Syria strike | 5M military aid package for Ukraine announced Biden strikes optimistic tone in meeting with Mexican president White House defends not sanctioning Saudi crown prince over Khashoggi MORE previously said the release of Biden’s first budget proposal will likely be delayed due to the delay in transition from the Trump administration.

Updated: 7:30 p.m.





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