The nomination of Kalpana Kotagal to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is still ongoing. Kotagal was nominated to serve as a commissioner on the EEOC in April 2022 and would give the democrats a 3-2 majority on the Commission.

Prior to her nomination, Kotagal’s career was hailed as that of a defender of civil and workers’ rights. She helped develop a legal rider to ensure diversity in Hollywood and litigated cases designed to protect American workers from discrimination. Her legal history involved cases that dealt with Title VII (which protected workers from discrimination), the Equal Pay Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, The Family and Medical Leave Act, and the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Since her nomination, the conservative research firm American Accountability Foundation (A.A.F.) has launched attacks against her to distort her record. A.A.F. attacked her as “anti-American” and drew attention to her legal work protecting trans people, mischaracterized her work in Hollywood as a “racial quota” enforcer, painted her as anti-law enforcement, and positioned her as a fossil fuel abolitionist. She has also been criticized for her use of class action suits and her work on behalf of unions. Numerous Republican Senators used these attacks against Kotagal to oppose her nomination, labeling her a radical partisan unfit for the position. While Kotagal’s nomination is still pending, the persistent attacks against her are emblematic of the right’s commitment to obstructing Biden’s nominees—particularly women of color with a progressive political background.

Nomination Timeline


Initial Media Reaction To Kotagal


Right-Wing Attacks on Kotagal


Right-Wing Attack Funding Sources


Attacks Against Kotagal During Hearings


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