President Joe Biden’s Cabinet Nominees

Norah Hussaini, Staff Writer

  1. Merrick Garland is most known for his failed Supreme Court nomination during the Obama administration. He was denied a hearing by Mitch McConnell, who wanted to reserve the seat for a justice nominated by the incoming president. This has made his nomination even more well-deserved. Even so, Garland is usually regarded as a moderate, which puts him in a good place with both Democrats and Republicans. Garland also has decades of past experience with the United States attorney general, including serving as principal associate deputy U.S. attorney general, which is directly below his new position.
  2. Pete Buttigieg will be another “first” nomination for the Presidential Cabinet as the first LGBTQ+ American to fill a Senate-confirmed Cabinet post. During Buttigieg’s presidential campaign, he introduced a 1 trillion-dollar infrastructure plan with a focus on public transportation as well as reconnecting impoverished and minority communities. Buttigieg’s plan also includes elements of climate protection, which Biden has committed to addressing. In addition to his infrastructure plan, one of Buttigieg’s main focuses in his campaign was the Green New Deal. With many other members of the cabinet also focusing on environmental benefits, Buttigieg could be a key player in making America green.
  3. Xavier Becerra is an interesting pick for Biden’s secretary of health and human services. Biden and Becerra’s views on healthcare are complete opposites. While Becerra openly supports Medicare for all, Biden has repeatedly said that he opposes the idea. As an advocate for abortion rights and women’s rights, Becerra earns my star of approval. He has challenged laws that prohibit women from receiving abortions and has stood up to policies in Mississipi that restricted what doctors could do to help women with unwanted pregnancies. Biden and Becerra could either even each other out or cause a conflict between progressive and moderate ideas.
  4. Janet Yellen is, by far, one of the most qualified people to serve her position as Treasury secretary. Yellen will be responsible for helping the struggling economy and massive unemployment rate due to COVID-19, and she may be one of the best people for the job. She will be the first person to have served as chair of the Council of Economic Advisors, Treasury secretary and chair of the Federal Reserve. This also means that she is now part of the miniscule group of people who have gotten to control economic power from the White House, the Federal Reserve and the President’s cabinet.
  5. Katherine Tai will fill the role of U.S. trade representative. Tai was one of the main managers of the passing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). This agreement was signed by Canada, Mexico and the U.S. and lifted tariffs from most goods that were produced. However, this wasn’t the only huge task that Tai has worked through successfully. She also included labor unions, corporate lobbyists, environmental groups and the Trump administration’s demands in the United-States-Mexico-Canada-Agreement (U.S.M.C.A), a successor to NAFTA. Tai’s leadership skills, as well as her involvement in past large trade agreements, will undoubtedly come in handy as she fills her role.
  6. Biden’s pick for secretary of education, Miguel Cardona, was the only candidate that was a surprise to many. Although Biden fulfilled his promise of appointing a public school educator as secretary of education, Cardona doesn’t have the same level of experience that other nominees have. His previous position was as an assistant superintendent of 8,000 kids in Connecticut. He will be going from 8,000 kids to overseeing the entire Department of Education. This role will be especially difficult for Cardona because he will have to fix mistakes made by Betsy DeVos, the former secretary of education under Former President Trump, who wanted to find a completely different alternative to public schooling. Cardona may have to take some time to adjust, which could have an impact on the amount of work he gets done in the first year.