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Monday, December 6, 2021

Biden picks women of color to head White House budget office

by Darlene Superville and Alexandra Jaffe

NANTUKET, Mass (AP) – President Joe Biden announced Wednesday that he is nominating Shalanda Young to head the White House budget office and Nani Coloretti as Young’s deputy.

If confirmed by the Senate, Young would be the first black woman to head the Office of Management and Budget, while Coloretti, who is a Filipino American, would become one of the highest-ranking Asian Americans in the Biden administration.

It will be the first time that two women of color will head the agency, which helps the president develop the annual budget and monitors how tax dollars are spent.

“It is an honor for me to nominate two extraordinary, history-making women today to lead the Office of Management and Budget,” Biden said in a video announcement released Wednesday.

Young has served as the office’s acting director for most of the year. Biden’s first nominee for the position of director, Nira Tandon, faced bipartisan criticism for her past attacks on lawmakers, and she eventually withdrew from the idea.

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Biden said Young “continues to impress me” during his time as acting director.

She faces her own Senate confirmation vote, but in March she was initially confirmed for the role of acting director with the support of nearly two-thirds and many Republicans. As the former staff director of the House Appropriations Committee, Young had the support of top Democratic leaders, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Pelosi said in a statement Wednesday that Young’s nomination “deserved”.

Coloretti will join the administration from the Urban Institute think tank, where she is a senior vice president.

Biden said his nominees are “two of the most experienced, qualified people to lead the budget office,” and called on the Senate to vote quickly to confirm them for the positions.

The head of the Office of Management and Budget is tasked with putting together the administration’s budget and overseeing a wide range of logistics and regulatory issues in the federal government.

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Jaffe reported from Washington.

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