November 29, 2023

Biden Labor Nominee Voted Down in Senate

Once again, Jose Javier Rodriguez’s nomination as assistant secretary of labor has failed to gain support to move forward in the Senate.

His nomination fell short, 44-51, with four Democrats being absent, and Schumer switching his vote to a “No” just before the vote closed.

This will enable Schumer to refloor the nomination at a later date to reconsider the nomination.

Bad Choices

I know Trump met some resistance with his appointments when he was president, but I cannot remember him seeing this much resistance from within the GOP the way Biden is in the Democrat Party right now.

Schumer has not announced if he will put Rodriguez’s nomination back on the floor but if he does, he is going to have to do some convincing before that happens.

In addition to Schumer, Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) were both “No” votes in the nomination, and neither of them seems inclined to change their vote.

Manchin’s office stated that the senator blocked the nominee due to "concerns about his political activism and lack of experience."

Even if the Democrats missing from the vote all voted in favor of the nominee, Schumer would still need one of them to switch, which would give Kamala Harris the tiebreaking vote to push the nomination through.

In all honesty, Biden needs to move on because this nomination has been stuck in the Senate since July 2021, when Biden first nominated Rodriguez for the position.

If he is ever successful, Rodriquez would head the Labor Department’s Employment and Training Administration, having previous experience as a labor attorney and state senator in Florida.

That does not seem likely, however. As noted above, both Manchin and Menendez appear to be firmly dug in on this issue, and with only a two-vote cushion, Rodriquez should just withdraw from consideration.

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