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Collins to vote against budget nominee Tanden, throwing confirmation further in doubt

Biden Cabinet Budget Director
Posted at 10:50 AM, Feb 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-22 10:59:44-05

WASHINGTON (AP) — Moderate Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine says she'll vote against confirming President Joe Biden’s nomination of Neera Tanden to lead the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Collins' announcement Monday throws Tanden's confirmation further into doubt.

On Friday, Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia became the first Democratic lawmaker to oppose Tanden’s confirmation.

The White House has defended Tanden, saying she's "an accomplished policy expert." Biden says he thinks he can “find the votes and get her confirmed” in the 50-50 Senate.

Collins says Tanden has “neither the experience nor the temperament" for the agency.

During a hearing earlier this month, Tanden faced sharp criticism from members of the Senate Budget Committee who questioned her for past tweets she sent about members of Congress. Senators on both sides of the aisle questioned her fitness for the role she's nominated for.

Tanden has apologized for spending years attacking top Republicans on social media and since deleted many of the tweets in question, which Collins has taken issue with.

“In addition, Ms. Tanden’s decision to delete more than a thousand tweets in the days before her nomination was announced raises concerns about her commitment to transparency. Should Congress need to review documents or actions taken by OMB, we must have confidence that the Director will be forthcoming," wrote Collins. "The OMB needs steady, experienced, responsive leadership. I will vote against confirming Ms. Tanden."