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So Neera, So Far

Notes on a failure.

PBS Newshour

We have already covered many of the lows and further lows of Neera Tanden’s now-officially-failed nomination to run the Office of Management and Budget. With Tanden having formally withdrawn her bid on Tuesday night, she enters the history books as the first doomed nominee of the Biden administration.

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I just have a very few final thoughts about this sorry affair:

  1. Neera Tanden will be absolutely fine. President Biden made it clear that a job will be found for her that does not require Senate confirmation. You can’t get rid of her that easily!
  2. As our own Jack Crosbie so ably reminded us, the thing that tanked Tanden’s nomination—her acres of bad tweets—was always the stupidest and least important reason to oppose her. There were great reasons not to want her to get confirmed—like the lengthy history of union-busting, corporate profiteering, and general elite liberal cravenness that Cros outlined—but they were sublimated in favor of yet another one of Joe Manchin’s extremely tiresome, substance-free tantrums about the abstract merits of bipartisan comity.
  3. Just as we are better off without Neera Tanden running OMB, we are also better off now that it appears Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski will not get whatever noxious kickback she was very clearly pushing the White House to give her in exchange for supporting Tanden. Murkowski has been going around saying that there was never a quid pro quo implied, only that she was very keen on educating Tanden and the Democrats about how it would be great if the federal government just happened to implement the energy and economic policies that Murkowski favors for Alaska. This is much the same as me telling a judge that I was not holding that man at ransom, I just tied him up and sent his family a note speaking in general terms about how $500,000 left in a briefcase under a park bench would be nice, and what did they think about it?
  4. There are several options for Tanden’s replacement floating around. Congressional Democrats and Republicans are pushing hard for Shalanda Young, Tanden’s erstwhile deputy. “You might talk me out of voting for you, but I doubt it,” Linsdey Graham told Young on Tuesday. Make of that what you will.  
  5. Never tweet, obviously.
  6. The ultimate killer part of this: Bernie Sanders got through the entire Tanden saga without ever once saying whether he’d vote for her. LMAO. Revenge is sweet.