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Senate holds Biden cabinet hearings for key roles today

The Senate will holding hearings for President-elect Biden’s cabinet appoints just one day out from inauguration day (https://www.npr.org/2021/01/19/958016402/senate-begins-biden-cabinet-confirmation-hearings-as-impeachment-trial-looms). These five positions are retired four-star General Lloyd AUstin for the Department of Defense, Alejandro Mayorkas for the Department of Homeland Security, Antony Blinken for the State Department, Avril Haines as the Director of National Intelligence, and former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen for the Department of the Treasury. Republicans technically still hold the majority until newly elected Georgia Senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff are sworn in.


The nominations come as the Senate looks to take care of several important tasks including the impeachment trial of current President Donald Trump and a potential new stimulus package. Some Senators have argued that Biden’s cabinet and the stimulus package take precedence, even saying that they should wait to hold Trump’s trial until after the first 100 days of the next administration, or even dismiss it altogether. Leading Democrats currently plan to move forward with the process in hopes of barring Trump from ever running for office again.


Many of Biden’s choices will serve as trailbreakers, being the first minority and/or female to hold many of these positions. Here is a list of his current nominations:


Secretary of State: Antony Blinken

Secretary of Defense: Retired Gen. Lloyd Austin

Secretary of Homeland Security: Alejandro Mayorkas

Director of National Intelligence: Avril Haines

Ambassador to the U.N.: Linda Thomas-Greenfield

Secretary of the Treasury: Janet Yellen

Chairperson, Council of Economic Advisors: Cecilia Rouse

U.S. Trade Representative: Katherine Tai

Secretary of Commerce: Gina Raimondo

Chief of Small Business AdministrationL Isabel Guzman

Attorney General: Merrick Garland

Secretary of Health and Human Services: Xavier Becerra

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: Marcia Fuge

Secretary of Agriculture: Tom Vilsack

Secretary of Veterans Affairs: Denis McDonough

Secretary of Labor: Marty Walsh

Secretary of Transportation: Pete Buttigieg

Secretary of Energy: Jennifer Granholm

Secretary of the Interior: Deb Haaland

Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency: Michael Regan

Secretary of Education: Miguel Cardona

Director, Office of Science and Technology Policy: Eric Lander

CIA Director: William Burns

Administrator, U.S. Agency for International Development: Samantha Power

Deputy Secretary of State: Wendy Sherman

Deputy Secretary of the Treasury: Adewale Adeyemo

Deputy Attorney General: Lisa Monaco

Director, Center for Disease Control and Prevention: Dr. Rochelle Walensky

Surgeon General: Dr. Vivek Murthy

Member, Council of Economic Advisors: Jared Bernstein

Member, Council of Economic AdvisorsL Heather Boushey

Chairperson, Council for Environmental Quality: Brenda Mallory

Director, Federal Emergency Management Agency: Deanna Criswell

Director, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Rohit Chopra

Chair, Securities and Exchange Commission: Gary Gensler


Most all of these positions will eventually need to be confirmed by the Senate, and with Democrats holding the tie breaker under Vice President-elect Harris, expect most, if not all to make it through.

Image Credit: Susan Walsh/AP

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