Politics Hugh Hewitt says Senate should confirm Tanden
Neera Tanden's outreach to senators continues next week as confirmation in jeopardy
President Joe Biden's nominee to lead the Office of Management and Budget Neera Tanden will carry on with her outreach to senators next week after her confirmation was jeopardized Friday when Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin revealed he would vote against her. © Alex Wong/Getty Images Director of the Office of Management and Budget nominee Neera Tanden speaks during an event to name President-elect Joe Biden's economic team at the Queen Theater on December 1, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware. So far, Tanden has met with 35 senators on both sides of the aisle, according to a source involved with the confirmation process.
Conservative talk radio host Hugh Hewitt on Monday called for the Senate to confirm Neera Tanden as Office of Budget and Management (OMB) director after several key centrist senators have said they will vote against her nomination.
In an, Hewitt said that though he had suffered "Tanden-inflicted scars" in controversial tweets Tanden had sent while serving as the head of the liberal Center for American Progress, he thought that senators voting against her over tweets would be punishing political opinions.
Neera Tanden’s nomination to head White House budget office in peril as Collins, Romney say they will vote against her
The nomination of Neera Tanden to head the powerful Office of Budget and Management appears increasingly imperiled, with Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Mitt Romney and Utah, both Republicans, announcing on Monday morning that they would vote against the nominee. Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a centrist Democrat, had earlier indicated that he, too, would vote against Tanden. At issue is Tanden’s storied legacy of incendiary tweets, which have frequently criticized and mocked Trump, congressional Republicans and progressives like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
"She's a serious left-liberal, though not as far to the left as Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, so she's left some marks on Team Sanders as well. She should also be confirmed as OMB director," Hewitt wrote.
"All political people, especially senators, should live with the same rules of political debate as the rest of us. They should not use their confirmation power to protect themselves from online criticism, however hurtful," Hewitt wrote. "Everyone draws the line at threats. But Tanden has just clobbered people the good old-fashioned way: with words."
Hewitt's comments come as Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) on Friday became the first Democratic senator to say he would oppose Tanden's nomination, citing Tanden's controversial tweets. On Monday, key Republican centrists Susan Collins (Maine) and Mitt Romney (Utah) said they would vote against confirmation.
Susan Collins Deals (Likely) Death Blow to Tanden Nomination
Senate moderates are poised to sacrifice Biden’s OMB pick on the altar of civility — but the White House isn’t relinquishing Tanden just yet.During the Trump era, Joe Manchin repeatedly bucked his party on high-profile votes, but in almost all of these cases, his vote was not decisive. For example, the West Virginia Democrat backed Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court — but only after enough Republican moderates had declared their support for Trump’s nominee to ensure his ascension. Meanwhile, Manchin toed the party line on the Trump Tax Cuts and Obamacare repeal.
Hewitt went on to argue that even if Tanden's previous tweets are considered a referendum on her temperament, that would be a more appropriate consideration for a position such as a lifetime judgeship.
"New presidents who have four years to succeed deserve their team in place, absent disqualifying personal flaws or other serious cause for concern. There are exceptions to every rule, but 'mean tweets' doesn't even come close," Hewitt wrote.
The announcements from Manchin, Collins and Romney almost certainly doom Tanden's chances at confirmation. Collins, whom the White House had viewed as a possible GOP pickup vote, alsoTanden's social media activity in her announcement.
Neera Tanden tries to save her nomination with Lisa Murkowski meeting .
Neera Tanden, President Biden's embattled nominee to lead the Office of Management and Budget, met with Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Monday in an eleventh-hour attempt to save her nomination. © Provided by Washington Examiner And Murkowski, one of the most centrist Republican senators who could save Tanden's nomination from doom, did not rule out joining Democrats in voting to confirm Tanden. "I'm still doing my assessment," Murkowski told the congressional reporting pool on Monday. "I have some more follow-up questions.