The White House refuses to condemn President Biden’s choice of budget chief over his divergent comments on lawmakers, despite fierce criticism from both sides of the aisle – and says the Commander-in-Chief believes that she is the “right fit” for the job.
Asked Monday about concerns over Neera Tanden’s rhetoric, White House press secretary Jen Psaki called it an “overestimation” that there was no new tone of unity in Washington simply because of his appointment.
Psaki was responding to one of many questions about Tanden’s appointment as head of the Bureau of Management and Budget – which became in serious jeopardy after Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), Mitt Romney (R-Ut .) And Susan Collins (R-Me.) Announced that they would all oppose her, citing her harsh rhetoric towards lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.
“I think the fact that the president appointed her to … lead the OMB reflects her view that she is the right person to be in his cabinet,” she said, adding that the White House believed “in her qualifications, in her experience working across the aisle. with people from different groups who have different views is a reflection of how she would play that role.
In separate statements explaining their decisions, each senator denounced placing such a partisan figure in a role that required such bipartisan cooperation.
“Senator Romney has criticized the extreme rhetoric of previous candidates, and it is consistent with that position,” a spokeswoman for the Utah senator said: “He thinks it is difficult to return to courtesy and respect with a candidate who has issued a thousand average tweets. “
Collins argued that Tanden “has neither the experience nor the temperament to run this critical agency.
“His past actions have demonstrated exactly the kind of animosity President Biden is committed to transcending.”
“I believe [Tanden’s] overtly partisan statements will have a toxic and damaging impact on the important working relationship between members of Congress and the next director of the Bureau of Management and Budget. For this reason, I cannot support his nomination, ”Manchin said.
Tanden couldn’t afford to lose a single Democratic vote in the 50-50 split Senate, and she couldn’t necessarily count on all of the party’s remaining members.
Clinton’s longtime ally has an extremely difficult history with Senate Budget Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Who has not said how he will vote on his nomination.
The OMB candidate is a prolific tweeter and has used the platform to issue explosive criticism against lawmakers – as well as voters – who identify with her right and left.
After messages targeting lawmakers whose votes she would need to confirm resurfaced in November, the vocal Democrat deleted more than 1,000 tweets.
The tweets, some deleted and others still online, refer to GOP lawmakers by name, tagging and criticizing them for supporting former President Donald Trump or, in some cases, personally attacking them.
In an effort to resolve the controversy over her comments, she apologized for her rhetoric during her opening speech at her Senate confirmation hearing.
“I deeply regret and apologize for my language and some of my past languages. I recognize that this role is a bipartisan role and I know that I must earn the trust of senators from all walks of life, ”she said earlier this month.