WASHINGTON, DC — As President Joe Biden prepares to fill a U.S. Supreme Court vacancy with a historic nominee, government watchdog Accountable.US released a new report showing that the President’s nominees of color in key cabinet-level departments often face a much slower path toward Senate confirmation than his white male nominees.
The fact that President Biden's white male nominees across several critical departments were confirmed by the U.S. Senate far more quickly than his nominees of color is deeply concerning, especially as lawmakers prepare to consider his forthcoming nominee for U.S. Supreme Court. These racial and gender disparities should sound alarm bells across Washington for anyone who wants President Biden's nominee for Supreme Court or any other position to have a fair and timely confirmation hearing."
Kyle Herrig, president of government watchdog Accountable.US
In looking at the Accountable.US analysis, Salon reported this morning, “the White House has repeatedly touted Biden’s diverse appointees but the Senate has confirmed Biden’s white and male nominees at a significantly faster rate than nominees of color.”
- JUSTICE DEPARTMENT: At the Department of Justice under Biden, white nominees were shown to have a faster track to being confirmed during the congressional confirmation process, with the process going about 60% faster than for nonwhite nominees. Of the five nominees who faced the longest delays, four were nonwhite.
- STATE DEPARTMENT: At the State Department, white male nominees had a faster track during the congressional confirmation process relative to other groups. 75% of State nominees were white, with 25% nonwhite, and there were 27% more male than female nominees. White males fared the best in terms of the timeframe to receive confirmation, going 13.7% faster than nonwhite females, 11% faster than white females, and 7% faster than nonwhite males.
- COMMERCE DEPARTMENT: Across the 18 nominations for the Commerce Department, white nominees (male and female) received a 37% faster track to receiving a congressional hearing – at 53.3 days to 73.3 days for nonwhite nominees – and a similar 55% faster track through the overall process.
- ENERGY DEPARTMENT: Across the 12 nominations for the Department of Energy, male nominees (white and nonwhite) received a congressional hearing twice as fast as their female counterparts – at 32.5 days vs. 66 days.
- INTERIOR DEPARTMENT: Across the 11 nominations for the Department of the Interior, male nominees (white and nonwhite) received a congressional hearing twice as fast – 32.5 days vs. 66 days for female nominees.