AOC, Ilhan Omar try to block ‘deficit hawk’ from Biden administration

on Nov24
by | Comments Off on AOC, Ilhan Omar try to block ‘deficit hawk’ from Biden administration |

Members of “The Squad” — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. and Ilhan Omar, D-Minn. — are mounting a petition against President-elect Biden nominating his former chief of staff Bruce Reed for a role within the White House, claiming Reed is a “deficit hawk,”

Ocasio-Cortez, Omar and Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., are the first members of Congress to sign the petition, launched by the Justice Democrats. The group objects to Reed potentially serving as the head of the Office of Management and Budget. 

“If the Biden administration is serious about protecting Medicare and Social Security, they must not appoint one of the biggest champions of cuts to lead their budget agency,” Omar wrote on Twitter, with a link to the petition. 

The letter demands that OMB “be staffed with people who will prioritize working people, not Wall Street deficit scaremongers.”

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Reed oversaw the Bowles-Simpson commission under President Obama, created in 2010 to recommend cuts for fiscal sustainability. Progressives criticized the commission because its final plan called for cuts and reform to Medicare and Social Security. 

“Biden must not repeat Obama’s mistake,” the petition read.

Biden has proposed a number of programs to build up Social Security and stave off the program’s insolvency. He ran on a platform of expanded benefits and more payroll taxes for high earners that would pay for the program.  

Meanwhile, Squad members have railed against Rahm Emanuel, insisting he not be given any role in the administration. 

“What is so hard to understand about this?” Ocasio-Cortez wrote on Twitter. “Rahm Emanuel helped cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald. Covering up a murder is disqualifying for public leadership. This is not about the ‘visibility’ of a post. It is shameful and concerning that he is even being considered.”

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“It is also a truly embarrassing indictment of what’s considered ‘center’ politics in the US that objecting to the appointment of an official who helped cover up the murder of a Black child is deemed the ‘progressive, far left’ position,” she continued.

She was responding to a Crain’s Chicago Business report that Emanuel was under consideration for U.S. Trade Representative after the Biden team faced pushback for considering him as Transportation Secretary.

“‘Less visible role’ doesn’t sound good either,” tweeted Tlaib.

McDonald was fatally shot by a Chicago police officer in 2014. The officer was eventually found guilty of second-degree murder. Emanuel has defended his handling of the McDonald case, denying in a 2015 op-ed that he withheld video of the shooting because of an election.

He added: “No one could have predicted that it would take more than a year to finish the probe … At the end of the day, I am the mayor and I own it. I take responsibility for what happened and I will fix it.”

Ocasio-Cortez recently told The New York Times that the Biden team had a thin line to walk in appeasing the party. Picking Emanuel, she said, would signal “a hostile approach to the grass-roots and the progressive wing of the party.”

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She added that she didn’t “envy the Biden team. It’s a very delicate balance. But I think it’s really important to strike a good one. Because it sends a very, very powerful message on the intention to govern.”

Fox News’ Sam Dorman contributed to this report. 



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