Indian-American Neera Tanden, US President Joe Biden’s nominee for the position of Director of White House Office of Management and Budget, is facing a challenge to her confirmation after Democratic Senator Joe Manchin announced that he would vote against her over “overtly partisan statements”.
Manchin’s announcement means that unless a Republican senator comes forward to support her nomination, it is unlikely that Tanden, 50, will be confirmed for the job.
Manchin, a moderate Democrat from West Virginia, 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.”
“For this reason, I cannot support her nomination. As I have said before, we must take meaningful steps to end the political division and dysfunction that pervades our politics,” he said. The 100-member Senate is evenly split between the Republicans and the Democrats. The vote of Vice-President Kamala Harris will tilt the balance in favour of the Democrats. As such the vote of Manchin gains significance, given that a majority of the Republicans are likely to oppose the nomination of Tanden.