Neera Tanden, budget chief pick of Joe Biden, withdraws from race after Senate pushback

WION Web Team
Washington, United StatesUpdated: Mar 03, 2021, 11:34 AM IST

Neera Tanden (file photo) Photograph:(Reuters)

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Tanden withdrew her name after Republicans refused to vote for her, citing her personal tweets attacking members of both parties

In one of the biggest blows to US President Joe Biden since he took over the White House, his budget director pick has withdrawn her name from the race on Tuesday.

Neera Tanden's withdrawal comes after centrists on both sides made it clear they would not be voting for her. This is a result of several of her tweets in which she openly criticised and questioned lawmakers and their intentions.

On Tuesday, Biden announced he already accepted her request for withdrawal of her nomination. 

"I have accepted Neera Tanden's request to withdraw her name from nomination for Director of the Office of Management and Budget," the president said in a statement. "I have the utmost respect for her record of accomplishment, her experience and her counsel, and I look forward to having her serve in a role in my administration."

The 50-year-old, who heads a progressive think tank said she has decided to withdraw her name to allow other lawmakers to focus on other priorities.

"Unfortunately, it now seems clear that there is no path forward to gain confirmation, and I do not want continued consideration of my nomination to be a distraction from your other priorities," she wrote in her withdrawal letter to Biden.

While her withdrawal from the race has not come as a surprise, it has received a lot of criticism, especially from locals who have taken to various social media platforms to express their opposition to the apparent 'discrimination towards Asian women'. 

Many people believe Tanden's only 'sin' was tweeting her opinion openly and being a 'woman of colour'. Tanden is of Indian-origin.

Tanden withdrew her name after last week Republicans refused to vote for her citing her personal tweets attacking members of both parties. Later, Joe Manchin, a conservative Democratic senator, also announced he would not be voting for Tanden due to the same reason.

Tanden needed 51 votes in the evenly-divided Senate. While Vice President Kamala Harris would have acted as a tiebreaker, Manchin's refusal to vote for his fellow party-members forced Tanden to withdraw her nomination.

Her withdrawal from the race leaves the Biden administration without any clear replacement, as of now.