Duckworth to vote 'no' on Biden picks unless they are minorities, LGBTQ

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  monstermash  •  3 weeks ago  •  22 comments

By:   Katherine Tully-McManus Posted (Roll Call)

Duckworth to vote 'no' on Biden picks unless they are minorities, LGBTQ
Sen. Tammy Duckworth says she will vote against Biden nominees who are straight and white until she is satisfied with diversity concerns.

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Congress


Duckworth to vote 'no' on Biden nominees unless they are minorities, LGBTQ


In 50-50 Senate, her support could be key for upcoming nominees


By Katherine Tully-McManusPosted March 23, 2021 at 6:53pm

Sen. Tammy Duckworth is pressuring President Joe Biden to step up Asian American and Pacific Islander representation in top positions of the administration, saying Tuesday that she will not vote for any future nominees who are white and straight until the situation is addressed to her satisfaction.

"I am a no vote on the floor, on all non-diversity nominees. You know, I will vote for racial minorities and I will vote for LGBTQ, but anybody else I'm not voting for," she told reporters.

"I am not going to be voting for any nominee from the White House, other than diversity nominees, probably a no on everyone until they figure this out," said Duckworth, one of only two Asian Americans in the Senate.

Duckworth said she informed the White House of her decision Tuesday morning but said she has been advocating on the issue for months.

"Hopefully they figure it out, but I'm a no on everything other than the diversity candidates," she said, citing her opposition to the nomination of Colin Kahl to be assistant secretary of Defense for policy.

Duckworth, who was born to a Thai mother of Chinese descent and an American father, was assistant secretary of Veteran Affairs from 2009 to 2011 in the Obama administration. Her name came up as a possible Biden administration nominee for Defense secretary and VA secretary.

With the Senate split 50-50 between Republicans and Democrats, even just one defector on the Democratic side can put nominations and legislation in jeopardy.

"In a 50-50 Senate, every senator has the power to complicate," Majority Whip and fellow Illinois Democrat Richard J. Durbin said about Duckworth's plan.

Duckworth has support for her move from Hawaii Democratic Sen. Mazie Hirono, the other Asian American in the Senate. Hirono is Japanese American.

"I'm joining her in that, which means that we would like to have a commitment from the White House that there'll be more diversity representation in the Cabinet, and in senior White House positions. And until that happens, I will join her in voting no on non-diversity nominees," said Hirono. "We're not just calling for AAPIs. This is not about pitting one diversity group against another. So I'm happy to vote for a Hispanic, a Black person, an LGBTQ person, an AAPI person," she said. "I'd just like to see more diversity represented."

Hirono told CNN on Tuesday that she, too, was unsatisfied with the White House's response to her inquiries about AAPI representation at Monday's virtual Senate Democratic retreat.

"I realize that we have Katherine Tai, but I don't think the trade representative is what the community understands as a Cabinet level," Hirono said.

The Senate voted 98-0 to confirm Tai to be U.S trade representative, which is referred to as a Cabinet-level role. The post is not among the 15 department secretaries who make up the president's Cabinet and is not in the presidential line of succession.

Of the 15 department secretaries, all of whom have been confirmed as of this week, eight are straight white men or women: Antony J. Blinken (State), Janet L. Yellen (Treasury), Merrick Garland (Justice), Tom Vilsack (Agriculture), Gina Raimondo (Commerce), Marty J. Walsh (Labor), Jennifer M. Granholm (Energy) and Denis McDonough (Veterans Affairs).

The other seven would meet Duckworth's criteria for diversity, being either a racial minority or LGBTQ: Lloyd J. Austin III (Defense), Deb Haaland (Interior), Xavier Becerra (Health and Human Services), Marcia L. Fudge (Housing and Urban Development), Pete Buttigieg (Transportation), Miguel Cardona (Education) and Alejandro Mayorkas (Homeland Security).

At what is considered the Cabinet level on the White House website, there are seven people in their positions and one vacancy. Of those seven, five would meet Duckworth's diversity criteria: Michael Regan (EPA), Tai (USTR), Linda Thomas-Greenfield (U.S. ambassador to the United Nations), Cecilia Rouse (chair of the Council of Economic Advisers) and Isabel Guzman (Small Business Administration.) The other two would not: Avril Haines (director of national intelligence) and Ron Klain (White House chief of staff). There is a vacancy at the Office of Management and Budget.

Duckworth said the White House has pointed to Vice President Kamala Harris, whose mother was an Indian immigrant and father is Black, as an example of high-ranking and extremely visible Asian American representation.
"To be told that, 'Well, you have Kamala Harris, we're very proud of her, you don't need anybody else' is insulting," said Duckworth.

She said her frustration with the situation and White House response escalated during Monday night's virtual retreat of the Senate Democratic caucus.
"Multiple times I've heard that. And that is not something you would say to the Black caucus: 'Well, you have Kamala, we're not going to put any more African Americans in the Cabinet because you have Kamala.' Why would you say it to AAPI?" she said.

Neera Tanden, who was born to immigrant parents from India, was Biden's top pick to lead the Office of Management and Budget, but she withdrew from consideration when key senators, including West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin III, voiced opposition to her nomination. Tanden's detractors also zeroed in on colorful tweets disparaging some of the same senators she needed to court for votes, like Maine Republican Susan Collins.

Biden has not named a replacement for Tanden. On Tuesday, the Senate confirmed Shalanda Young, a Black woman, as deputy OMB director.

The push for more diversity from Duckworth and Hirono comes as a yearlong surge of anti-Asian bigotry and violence crescendoed last week when a gunman killed eight people in small businesses owned by Asian Americans in the Atlanta area, including six women of Asian descent.

It also comes as Lina Kahn, an antitrust scholar, has been nominated to be commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission. Her nomination received praise earlier this week from California Democratic Rep. Judy Chu, who chairs the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.

"In addition to the skill she will bring to this position, I am also thrilled to see President Biden continue to deliver on his promise to build an executive branch that looks like our country," Chu said in a statement. "That includes an historic commitment to diversity which ensures communities of color like Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have a strong voice in our federal government."

Hawaii Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz said all the parties are working toward a solution.

"I think it is objectively true that in terms of the top Cabinet positions, that the representation is not there. I think it's also true that the White House wants to fix this," Schatz said. "I've talked to both Mazie and Tammy about it, and we've talked to the White House, and I think there's goodwill here. And so I think this is going to land in a good place."

Jennifer Shutt, Lindsey McPherson and Jason Dick contributed to this report.


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MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
1  seeder  MonsterMash    3 weeks ago

Imagine the uproar from leftist if a white Republican male told Biden he wouldn't vote for any future nominees who are minorities and/or LGBTQ and say "I'm a no vote on the floor, on all diversity nominees. I will vote for straight whites only, but anybody else I'm not voting for"

Democrats would be calling him a racist bigot demanding his expulsion from Congress.

 
 
 
Split Personality
PhD Principal
1.1  Split Personality  replied to  MonsterMash @1    3 weeks ago
Imagine the uproar from leftist if a white Republican male told Biden he wouldn't vote for any future nominees who are minorities and/or LGBTQ and say "I'm a no vote on the floor, on all diversity nominees. I will vote for straight whites only, but anybody else I'm not voting for"

I would think that most Americans assume that is true already.

JMHO.

 
 
 
charger 383
PhD Quiet
2  charger 383    3 weeks ago

Proving diversity is racist

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
2.1  JohnRussell  replied to  charger 383 @2    3 weeks ago
Proving diversity is racist

That is totally ridiculous. 

 
 
 
MAGA
Senior Guide
2.1.1  MAGA  replied to  JohnRussell @2.1    3 weeks ago

No it’s not.  It’s right on when diversity is taken to that extreme.  

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
3  Sean Treacy    3 weeks ago

They are racists. Plain and simple. 

No better than the Klansman Robert Byrd or John Calhoun. 

 
 
 
Split Personality
PhD Principal
3.1  Split Personality  replied to  Sean Treacy @3    3 weeks ago
Imagine the uproar from leftist if a white Republican male told Biden he wouldn't vote for any future nominees who are minorities and/or LGBTQ and say "I'm a no vote on the floor, on all diversity nominees. I will vote for straight whites only, but anybody else I'm not voting for"

Or John Cornyn.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
4  Buzz of the Orient    3 weeks ago

Personally I was never in favour of Affirmative Action, because IMO it contributes to the dumbing down of America - I believe it's the most brilliant, experienced, sane, open minded, sensible and best suited of all who should be given priority no matter what colour, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, nationality they are. Therefore I strongly disagree with Duckworth's opinion.

 
 
 
MAGA
Senior Guide
4.1  MAGA  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4    3 weeks ago

We actually agree on something...

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
4.1.1  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  MAGA @4.1    3 weeks ago

We've agreed on more than that, even though we've disagreed on others.  

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5  JohnRussell    3 weeks ago

This silly article is the latest in an endless line of white grievance irrelevancies. In the first place, Tammy Duckworth called off her "boycott" of "non minority" administration nominees, (and did it before this article was seeded), and even if she hadnt there is nothing wrong with someone in a minority group advocating for the group to have more power, seats at the table, oscar nominees, sports coaches, or whatever. Unlike her critics, Duckworth is smart enough to know that she could use her voice to remind Biden he has pledged to have across the board diversity , so if Asians are not being represented, someone with visibility spoke up about it, big deal. 

But , not surprisingly , no one on this seed mentions that section of the article that is the most revealing as to why Duckworth did what she did

Duckworth said the White House has pointed to Vice President Kamala Harris, whose mother was an Indian immigrant and father is Black, as an example of high-ranking and extremely visible Asian American representation.
"To be told that, 'Well, you have Kamala Harris, we're very proud of her, you don't need anybody else' is insulting," said Duckworth.

She said her frustration with the situation and White House response escalated during Monday night's virtual retreat of the Senate Democratic caucus.


"Multiple times I've heard that. And that is not something you would say to the Black caucus: 'Well, you have Kamala, we're not going to put any more African Americans in the Cabinet because you have Kamala.' Why would you say it to AAPI?" she said.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
5.1  Sean Treacy  replied to  JohnRussell @5    3 weeks ago
In the first place, Tammy Duckworth called off her "boycott" of "non minority" administration nominees

Oh.. that makes it okay. 

John, if a Republican Senator publicly claimed he was going to boycott all minority nominees, you'd be the the last person to say it's no big deal if they didn't actually follow through on the boycott. Let's not pretend otherwise. 

They backed off because they realized it exposed their racism in a way even their comrades can't hide. They are  as explicitly racist as George Wallace. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1.1  JohnRussell  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1    3 weeks ago

Tammy Duckworth saying Asian Americans should have more representation is not the same thing or the same issue as if a white senator said he would vote against all minority nominees. If you think it is there is something seriously wrong with you. 

Duckworth is saying there should be more Asian Americans in government, in your scenario the white senator would be saying there are too many minorities in government. Not the same thing. 

Tammy Duckworth is not a racist, but Ron Johnson probably is. 

I have no problem realizing that fact. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
5.1.2  Sean Treacy  replied to  JohnRussell @5.1.1    3 weeks ago
worth saying Asian Americans should have more representation is not the same thing or the same issue as if a white senator said he would vote against all minority nominees. If you think it is there is something seriously wrong with you. 

She said she's was going to boycott White nominees. Not over ideology. Not over principle. The only reason she doesn't want white progressives confirmed is race. She can't be any more clear. 

Not the same thing. 

It's the exact same thing.  Duckworth wants less whites and more Asians.  In my imaginary scenario the racist Senator wants more white whites and less Asians. Two sides of the same of the same coin.  

Tammy Duckworth is not a racist, but Ron Johnson probably is. 

She absolutely is. IF saying "I won't support white nominees" isn't racist, nothing is. If Ron Johnson ever floats the idea of boycotting all non-white nominees, I'll agree with you when you call him a racist. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1.3  JohnRussell  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.2    3 weeks ago

Has there been , ever, a shortage of white nominees for cabinet or administration positions ?  Or have whites been over represented historically in positions of power? 

 
 
 
321steve - realistically thinkin or Duu
Sophomore Principal
5.1.4  321steve - realistically thinkin or Duu   replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1    3 weeks ago
They backed off because

Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., reversed course on vowing to object to President Joe Biden's nominees after a spokesperson from her office said she had received assurances from the Biden administration.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
6  Sean Treacy    3 weeks ago

It figures it would be Duckworth and Hirono to be the two Senators who made their racism explicit.  They are probably the two dumbest Senators, as recent events have shown.  Duckworth got dropped from the VP short list lickety split after she appeared on national TV and accused George Washington and Abe Lincoln of being traitors,.  Hirono's idiocy has been on full display every time the Senate holds a Supreme Court confirmation hearing.  Her questioning is  appointment tv for conservatives in need  of a laugh.

So it's no surprise they'd be the ones to bring the Democrats institutional racism into the public eye. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
6.1  JohnRussell  replied to  Sean Treacy @6    3 weeks ago
They are probably the two dumbest Senators, as recent events have shown. 

I have never seen Duckworth or Hirono say anything that made me question their intelligence. I have seen Donald Trump say or tweet hundreds of things that made me question his intelligence though. 

 
 
 
MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
6.1.1  seeder  MonsterMash  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1    3 weeks ago

Trump is off topic

OK, then you need to announce that, typically in your first comment and in red ink for it to apply to the whole seed.

Now that you have told JR, he is bound by that as is everyone else.

But you cannot flag it and respond to it at the same time. SP

 
 
 
MAGA
Senior Guide
6.2  MAGA  replied to  Sean Treacy @6    3 weeks ago
They are probably the two dumbest Senators, as recent events have shown. 

tucker Carlson said the same on his most recent show.

 
 
 
MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
7  seeder  MonsterMash    3 weeks ago

Tammy Duckworth called off her "boycott" of "non minority" administration nominees.

She did only after Biden assured her he would add a senior-level Asian American Pacific Islander liaison, who will ensure the community's voice is further represented and heard."

Duckworth threatens Biden, Biden kisses her ass.

She called off her boycott, but she's still not going to vote for a white person unless they're LGBTQ

 
 
 
Split Personality
PhD Principal
7.1  Split Personality  replied to  MonsterMash @7    3 weeks ago

Politics, do you honestly think anyone them are any different by party?

They see leverage, they try it, they back off if they hear what they want.

The sound bytes are now eternal, brought up whenever needed.

 
 
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