President Joe Biden announced Wednesday (Nov. 24) that he will nominate Shalanda Young as his administration’s budget director, which would make her the first Black woman to lead the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), The Washington Post reports.
The Senate must approve her nomination. In March, more than a dozen Republicans crossed party lines to vote, 63-to-37, in favor of confirming Young to her current post of OMB deputy director.
“In her eight months as acting director of OMB, she’s continued to impress me and congressional leaders as well,” Biden said. “Shalanda will not only be a tremendously qualified director, she’ll also be a historic director.”
Young served previously as a House Appropriations Committee staff member and has the support of top-ranking Democrats. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi urged Biden to promote her, according to Bloomberg News.
She has been serving as the acting director of OMB because Biden’s original choice for the position, Neera Tanden, was forced to withdraw from consideration for the director position.
According to Bloomberg, Tanden faced an uphill battle to get the votes she needed for confirmation. As a longtime liberal political operative, the former leader of the Center for American Progress, a think tank, published social media posts in the past that sharply criticized several lawmakers.
Sen. Joe Manchin, a conservative West Virginia Democrat, opposed confirming Tanden, the Post reported. Without support from all Senate Democrats, Tanden needed Republican help.
That was unlikely after she had called Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine “the worst” and “pathetic,” and comparing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to the Harry Potter series villain “Voldemort.”
OMB has a key role in coordinating with federal agencies and overseeing the execution of spending programs approved by Congress. If confirmed, Young faces the challenge of implementing Biden’s ambitious economic agenda.