Biden’s Administration: Here are his Cabinet members and key advisors.
With President Biden having nominated an experienced group of people to serve as key advisors or as members of his cabinet, here is a quick rundown on the President’s nominees for the top jobs in federal government.
One of the most important cabinet positions is Secretary of State—the person who is responsible for carrying out and moulding the administration’s foreign policy and acts as a global diplomat for the President. Biden has nominated Antony Blinken who served as deputy secretary of state and as deputy national security advisor under President Obama. President Biden has a long working relationship with Blinken who was his national security advisor whilst he served on the Senate foreign relations committee and during his time as Vice-President. Many view Blinken’s nomination as a return to a more traditional foreign policy centred on strong international relations.
Biden has also nominated veteran diplomat of 35 years Linda Thomas-Greenfield to serve as U.N Ambassador, having overseen the Bureau of African Affairs under Obama and served as ambassador to Liberia she is an experienced candidate. Biden’s pick for National Security Advisor is Jake Sullivan who helped negotiate the Iran nuclear deal and served as then Vice-President Biden’s national security advisor. To oversee the military and advise the president on national defence Biden has nominated Retired Gen. Lloyd Austin. The four-star general was the first African-American to lead the U.S Central Command and brings decades of military experience to the table. The Senate voted 93 to 2 to confirm Austin having granted him wavier to take the position, making him the first African-American to become Secretary of Defence.
Advising the President on economic matters and policy will be Janet Yellen who Biden has nominated to serve as Secretary of the Treasury. Yellen was chair of the Federal Reserve from 2014 to 2018 and prior to that was the chairwoman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers under President Clinton. Yellen was easily confirmed with the senate voting 84-15 in her favour, making her the first woman to hold the position in its 231 year history.
Brian Deese has been picked as the Director of the National Economic Council; the position will make him the top advisor to the president on economic policy. Deese served as a climate advisor to President Obama and was deputy director of the NEC. Biden has selected Gina Raimondo the governor of Rhode Island, to run the Commerce Department were she will oversee the collection of economic data, the census, National Weather Service and NOAA.
Merrick Garland who President Obama nominated for a position on the Supreme Court is Biden’s choice for Attorney General. Garland who is the former chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit will be the top legal official in the federal government and will advise the President and the Whitehouse in his new job. Former Mayor of South Bend Indiana Pete Buttigieg has been confirmed by the senate 86-13 for his new role as Transportation Secretary, a position which will make him instrumental in carrying out Biden’s ambitious infrastructure plans. His confirmation has made him the first openly gay person to have a permanent place in the cabinet.
The former Secretary of State John Kerry will serve as the Special Presidential Envoy for Climate which is a role that President Biden has created. Kerry played an instrumental role in the crafting of the Paris Climate Accord and brings plenty of experience to the role having served as the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee before. Throughout his campaign Biden empathized his aim to change the country’s climate policy and to oversee elements of this he has chosen Deb Haaland to be his Secretary of the Interior, who if confirmed will be the first Native American to hold a cabinet position. This is epically meaningful as both the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Bureau of Indian Education operate within the department.
Xavier Becerra the current Attorney General of California and former congressman is Biden’s pick for Secretary of Health and Human Services, a role which has the added responsibility of COVID-19. In his position as Attorney General he has filed several lawsuits about healthcare and is an outspoken advocate of improved health care access, if confirmed he will be the first Latino to hold the position.
ARTICLE: NATHAN REID
POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: WALL STREET JOURNAL