Sacramento, California 2021-02-23 11:33:12 –
Washington (AP / CBS13) – Xavier Besera, elected Secretary of Health and Welfare by President Joe Biden, is facing a two-day Senate hearing. Republicans have described California as ineligible, but Democrats have accused the GOP of playing politics despite the coronavirus pandemic.
Currently, Attorney General of the most populous state in the United States, Besera is burned in two panels. Tuesday is the Health Commission’s turn, and Wednesday the Finance Commission will vote to send Besera’s nomination to the Senate floor. Once confirmed, he is the first Latin to lead the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, a $ 1.4 trillion institution with a broad portfolio that includes health insurance programs, drug safety and approval, advanced medical research, and children’s welfare. You will be a Latino.
In the opening statement, Besera said it was clear that the coronavirus pandemic would be his number one priority if confirmed.
“The president has an ambitious goal: 100 million vaccinations in the first 100 days, increased access to tests, sequencing of viruses, preparation of variants, schools and businesses Resuming. HHS plays a central role in achieving these goals safely and equitably, “he told the Health Commission.
But there is no doubt that North Carolina’s Republican Senator Richard Burr’s rankings are facing a difficult path for Bethera to win GOP support.
“I haven’t sold it yet,” Burr said, looking at the candidates. “At this point, I’m not sure if I have the experience and skills needed to do this job.” In the opening statement, Barr said that Besera is a private sector in providing innovations that benefit patients. In particular, I questioned whether the role played by pharmaceutical companies was respected.
Besera, 63, has represented the Hispanic district of Los Angeles in the US House of Representatives for over 20 years after winning the Senate election and replacing Vice President Kamala Harris as the state’s Supreme Law Enforcement Officer. It was. His politics is liberal, but his style is modest and problem-solving. As a member of the House of Representatives, he played a behind-the-scenes role in guiding President Barack Obama’s medical law through the Democratic Party of the House.
The Republican opposition grew prior to his nomination hearing. On Monday, Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana and Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas issued a letter calling Besera “not suitable for any position of public trust” and requesting Biden to withdraw his nomination. did. Kentucky Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell called him a “famous party.” And the political group Heritage Action for America has launched a cable and digital advertising campaign against Bethera.
Republicans say Bethera has no medical experience, with a fundamental support for socialized medicine, abortion, and restraint of religious freedom.
The Democratic Party is shrugging it.
Oregon’s Finance Commission Chairman Ron Wyden said Republicans were “just hanging out.” “They did their best to find something that could stick in the opposite position, but there is no” there “. “
At the White House briefing, spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Besera was part of a team where Biden needed to implement his COVID-19 response plan.
The pandemic is expected to dominate questions at health, education, labor and pension hearings on Tuesday. Senators from both parties want to know about the administration’s schedule to return to near normal, the progress of vaccination campaigns, the prospect of school reopening, and the threat of more aggressive viral mutations.
Bethera is expected to spend as much time as possible to drive Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 bailout program. The plan will pass the House of Representatives, but faces major political and procedural challenges in the Senate.
In many respects, Besera was California’s early opposition to the Trump administration. He was appointed Governor Jerry Brown to replace Harris and became Attorney General in early 2017 when Trump became president.
In four years, he has filed 124 proceedings against the Trump administration over immigration, environmental and healthcare policies. His proceedings and voice resistance to Trump’s policies could allow Republicans to portray him as an overly partisan figure. California was proud to see itself as a resistance to Trump, and Besera embodied that spirit.
Democrats say he is not outside the mainstream of their party, which strongly supports women’s access to abortion, and even if Biden reveals that he does not support it, all Single-payer government-run healthcare for is still a popular policy position.
Other articles on CBS Sacramento:
No medical experience will disqualify a candidate for an HHS secretary, but it can be a plus. Recent secretaries include not only one doctor, but also a pharmaceutical company executive, a White House budget director, and three governors.
Biden’s pandemic support has been adjusted from the White House. Besera is an important player, but the administration’s decision-making structure is already in place. Becerra is expected to be central to a wider range of healthcare policy issues, including increased insurance coverage and attempts to control the cost of prescription drugs.
Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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