Neera Tanden committee votes abruptly delayed as Biden budget pick’s nomination in jeopardy

Biden OMB nominee Neera Tanden facing opposition from Manchin, Sanders

Investigative journalist Peter Chowka discusses the senators’ oppositions to President Biden’s nominee.

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) and Budget Committees postponed planned business meetings Wednesday where they were supposed to vote on Neera Tanden, President Biden’s pick to be the director of the Office of Management and Budget. 

An official notice that the Tanden markup was postponed went out on the HSGAC website. A source familiar told Fox News that “Tanden’s budget markup is postponed” shortly before the Budget Committee sent out its official notice. 

Tanden’s nomination was on shaky ground ahead of the scheduled committee votes after Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and many Republicans said they would oppose her nomination last week. Now it’s thrown further into doubt by the cancellation of the two committee votes. 

Neera Tanden, President Joe Biden’s nominee for Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), appears beofre a Senate Committee on the Budget hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2021.(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, Pool)

“I have carefully reviewed Neera Tanden’s public statements and tweets that were personally directed towards my colleagues on both sides of the aisle from Senator Sanders to Senator McConnell and others,” Manchin said. “I believe her overtly partisan statements will have a toxic and detrimental impact on the important working relationship between members of Congress and the next director of the Office of Management and Budget.”

Fox News asked the White House if it had withdrawn Tanden’s nomination. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki responded with a statement lauding Tanden.

“Neera Tanden is a leading policy expert who brings critical qualifications to the table during this time of unprecedented crisis,” Psaki said. “She also has important perspective and values, understanding firsthand the powerful difference policy can make in the lives of those going through hard times. She has a broad spectrum of support, ranging from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to labor unions, and has a strong record of working with both parties that we expect to grow in President Biden’s cabinet as the first South Asian woman to lead OMB.”

Fox News did not immediately receive responses to requests for comment from the offices of Sens. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and Gary Peters, D-Mich., the ranking member and chairman of the HSGAC for comment. The office of moderate Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., who sits on the HSGAC, also did not immediately respond.

The office of Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on whether she’d made a decision on how she will vote on the Tanden nomination. Murkowski is considered one of the last Republicans who may vote for Tanden, thus canceling out the Manchin defection and allowing Tanden to be confirmed.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates. 

Fox News’ Jason Donner contributed to this report. 

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