Joe Biden picks Neera Tanden to lead budget office


Neera Tanden, whom presumed President-elect Joseph R. Biden announced Monday as his pick to lead the White House budget office, ran headlong into immediate opposition from Senate Republicans.

Ms. Tanden, the president of the liberal advocacy group Center for American Progress and a close ally of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is viewed by Republicans as a liberal bomb-thrower.

Sen. John Cornyn, Texas Republican, called the pick “radioactive” and said she was “maybe [Mr. Biden’s] worst nominee so far.”

“I think, in light of her combative and insulting comments about many members of the Senate, mainly on our side of the aisle, that it creates certainly a problematic path,” Mr. Cornyn said.

It spelled a difficult Senate confirmation process ahead for Ms. Tanden.

Some on the left were also skeptical of Ms. Tanden in what is quickly shaping up as a difficult Senate confirmation process ahead.

“Neera Tanden for OMB is a Biden FU to progressives. Tanden has been a warrior for corporate Dems against progressives, from Bernie Sanders to Jill Stein,” tweeted Howie Hawkins, the Green Party’s 2020 presidential nominee.

Ms. Tanden was one in a series of nominees Mr. Biden announced on Monday for his economic team.

As expected, he tapped former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen to be his next Treasury secretary.

If confirmed, Ms. Yellen would be the first woman to head the Treasury Department and the first person to have served as Treasury Secretary, chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, and chair of the Federal Reserve.

“We know that a job is more than just a paycheck — it’s about dignity and respect,” Ms. Yellen said in a video released by the Biden campaign that paraphrases an oft-used line from Mr. Biden on the campaign trail.

Rep. French Hill, who described Ms. Yellen as “forthright and focused,” said he hopes she can talk Mr. Biden out of some of his planned tax hikes upon entering office.

“Large tax burden increases on hardworking taxpayers, businesses, and entrepreneurs will slow the recovery, as will a growing tangle of new Washington mandates and regulations,” the Arkansas Republican said.

Mr. Biden tapped Cecilia Rouse, dean of the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs, as his nominee to chair the council of economic advisers.

He named Jared Bernstein, who was Mr. Biden’s chief economist as vice president, and Heather Boushey, co-founder of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, as his picks to be other members of the CEA.

He named Wally Adeyemo, the president of the Obama Foundation and a former top economic adviser in the Obama administration, as his pick for deputy treasury secretary.

Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, the top Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee who has extensive liberal bona fides, vouched for Mr. Biden’s entire team and singled out Ms. Yellen and Ms. Tanden for praise.

“The American people decisively voted for change. Mitch McConnell shouldn’t block us from having a functioning government that gets to work for the people we serve,” Mr. Brown said.

Mr. Biden is also expected to name Brian Deese, an economic adviser in the Obama administration and current executive at the investment firm BlackRock, as head of the National Economic Council, according to multiple reports.

Unlike the jobs of Treasury Secretary and OMB director, that position does not require Senate confirmation.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

View original


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here