As U.S. Faces Economic And Health Crises, Senate Republicans Already Threatening Unprecedented Obstructionism To Kneecap President-elect Biden’s Efforts To Control Pandemic And Get Economy Back On Track
Washington, DC – As President-elect Biden began rolling out his picks for top officials in his administration, Senate Republicans have dialed up their partisan rhetoric and threats to sabotage the incoming administration on behalf of their corporate donors and special interest allies. These Republican lawmakers are taking their hypocrisy to new heights and desperately inventing new excuses to oppose Biden’s experienced and well-qualified nominees.
Unsurprisingly, these are the same senators who in 2017 rushed Trump’s inexperienced and often corrupt nominees through the Senate, and are now reversing themselves and laying the groundwork for the kind of delay, gridlock, and obstruction that they just recently claimed to oppose.
“After years of standing with President Trump and doing the bidding of their corporate donors and special interest allies, Senate Republicans are now already talking about overturning the will of the people and obstructing the incoming Biden administration’s ability to staff a government that would prioritize workers and families ahead of special interests,” said Mairead Lynn, spokesperson for Accountable.US Senate War Room.
“But the American people aren’t going to fall for Senate Republicans’ partisan and hypocritical attempts to rewrite their own legislative history and sabotage the incoming administration. We will stand with Americans to hold Republicans’ feet to the fire to make sure President-elect Biden can fill his Cabinet with people who will get to work cleaning up Trump’s messes, getting the pandemic under control, and making progress for workers, families, and communities.”
In case you missed it, below is just a sampling of the myriad of egregious instances of Republicans’ hypocrisy and obstruction as the Accountable Senate War Room continues holding hypocritical Senators accountable in their quest to thwart an incoming administration’s right to a well-staffed government.
What Trump-allied, special interest-tied senators have been saying:
Rubio, Contradicting His Own 2017 Comments, Signals Intent to Block Biden Cabinet Appointments, Sabotage Incoming Administration’s Work. “Senator Marco Rubio suggested that he and other Senate Republicans are already planning to block nominees to President-elect Biden’s Cabinet and prevent the incoming administration…Senator Rubio’s comments stand in stark contrast to what he said just four years ago when he stated, ‘I believe the president is entitled to significant deference when it comes to his choices for the Cabinet,’ and it would be ‘against our national interests’ to delay one of his nominees.” [Accountable.US Release, 11/20/20]
Senators’ Refusal to Commit to Nominee Hearings “Height of Hypocrisy,” Latest Attempt to Sabotage Incoming Administration. “Senators Lindsey Graham and Rob Portman refused to say whether they would agree to even holding hearings for President-elect Biden’s nominee for the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Both Portman and Graham supported Mick Mulvaney and Russell Vought, President Trump’s nominees for the same position who both had long records of extreme partisanship and partisan attacks.” [Accountable.US Release, 12/2/20]
Watchdog Group Jumps on Sen. Scott’s “Absurd” Biden Nominee Attack: “He Thinks Budgets Should Prioritize His Wealthy Donors and Special Interest Allies.” “Sen. Scott claimed to be worried about “more debt” — but had no problem confirming Trump’s Budget nominee as tax cuts for the rich added trillions to national debt.” [Accountable.US Release, 12/3/20]
NOW: Sen. John Thune (R-SD) told reporters, “I’m not disqualifying anybody, but I do think it gets a lot harder obviously if they send someone from their progressive left that [is] kind of out of the mainstream.” [Washington Post, 11/30/20]
THEN: “This is obstruction for the sake of obstruction. I hope my Democrat colleagues realize sooner rather than later that it’s just as important for this president to have a full roster in his administration as it was for the last president. The American people deserve it.” [Senator John Thune (R-SD), 7/28/17]
NOW: A spokesperson from the office of Texas Senator John Cornyn remarked that a Tanden “stands zero chance of being confirmed.” Just a day prior, in a reference to the confirmation process, the Senator tweeted: “Transparency is non-negotiable.”
THEN: “‘This kind of mindless obstruction is actually irresponsible, if not downright dangerous.’ ‘The American people expect their Senators and Congress to do our jobs and fulfill the duties to those who we represent.’” [John Cornyn (R-TX), 2/6/17]
NOW: Former OMB chief Mick Mulvaney says on Fox News that it “could be very, very difficult” to confirm Neera Tanden in a Republican Senate. “To put someone like Neera Tanden in that office could be sending a strong message that this administration’s going to go hardcore left.” [Ryan Struyk, 11/30/20]
THEN: “Trump’s pick [Mick Mulvaney] has routinely sabotaged our nation’s ability to govern and trumpeted views that are wildly at odds with the preferences of voters in both parties.” [Public Citizen, 1/13/17]
But Senate Republicans’ partisan charade is falling flat:
“But there’s irony, or even hypocrisy, on the other side… Some of the Republican senators who have expressed resistance to Tanden said they weren’t happy with her attacks on them, many of which came in tweets… Singling out such attacks as disqualifying seems rich for members of a party who have spent the past four years defending or ducking President Trump’s tweets.” [Washington Post, 12/1/20]
“’I think it’s very important to have someone who can work with both sides of the aisle,’ said Portman, who held the budget post under President George W. Bush. ‘She has a very liberal public record and a very partisan series of comments she’s made’ Asked by a reporter Tuesday why he was concerned with Tanden’s Tweets but not those from President Donald Trump, Portman deflected back to his comments about Tanden being ‘very partisan.’” [The Columbus Dispatch, 12/1/20]
“Portman was a Republican member of the House before he led the OMB, and he was therefore himself ‘overtly partisan.’ So were Democrat Leon Panetta and Republicans David Stockman, Jim Nussle and Mick Mulvaney… How much more partisan can you get? There hasn’t been a nonpartisan budget director since the Bureau of the Budget became OMB 50 years ago.” [Bloomberg, 12/1/20]
“Moreover, they are complaining about ‘partisanship’ when they all voted to confirm Mick Mulvaney, the onetime Tea Party congressman and founder of the House Freedom Caucus, which was so “partisan” it chased both John Boehner and Paul Ryan out of the speaker’s chair and forced regular government shutdowns.” [Salon, 12/2/20]
What we’re doing about it:
We launched the Accountable Senate War Room to hold accountable those hypocritical Senators who have already “signaled their intent to block nominees and sabotage the incoming administration’s agenda, regardless whether they hold the majority or not come January 2021.