Biden Cabinet Hearings
With Trump refuting election results and a Senate run-off on January 5, it’s unclear whether Biden will have any Cabinet members in place before inauguration.
Before Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009, six Cabinet members had been confirmed by the Senate. Trump had two.
The first scheduled hearing is Friday when the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence hears from Biden’s pick for director of national intelligence Avril Haines.
On Tuesday, the day before inauguration, the Senate has scheduled hearings for four nominees including retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin for defense secretary, Janet Yellen for Treasury, Alejandro Mayorkas for homeland security and Antony Blinken for state.
Biden will plan on appointing acting agency heads when he takes office next week, relying on career civil servants.
Adding to the urgency of Cabinet appointments, Biden is wanting to push through quickly an additional coronavirus relief package. There will also be investigations into the Capitol riot and another impeachment, all competing for priority.
Also in Inauguration Day news, it was announced Thursday that pop star Lady Gaga will sing the National Anthem and Jennifer Lopez will perform a musical number at the Capitol ceremony next week.
The Capitol and U.S. Supreme Court are now surrounded by nonscalable fencing, with troops inside and surrounding the buildings. Attendance at the inauguration is limited, with members of Congress receiving one ticket due to the coronavirus.