The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs held an executive session on January 19 to vote on several Biden administration nominees, including five nominees for key HUD assistant secretary positions. The committee approved by voice vote the nomination of Elizabeth de Leon Bhargava to be an assistant secretary for administration of housing and urban development. The committee vote was tied along party lines for each of the other four nominees:
- David Uejio (nominated for assistant secretary of the Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO))
- Julia Ruth Gordon (nominated for assistant secretary of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA))
- Solomon Jefferey Greene (nominated for assistant secretary of the Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R))
- James Arthur Jemison (nominated for assistant secretary of the Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH))
The outcome mirrored that of last year, when the nominations received tied votes along partisan lines, stalling efforts to fill the leadership team of HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge. Pursuant to Senate Resolution 27 (S. Res. 27), the Senate may, in an executive session, vote to discharge a committee from consideration of a nomination if the nomination is not reported favorably because of a tie vote. By doing so, the Senate could move forward on a confirmation vote. (Both votes would require a simple majority.) However, this procedure for confirming nominations can slow confirmations significantly due to lengthened debate times.
At the time of writing, the HUD nominations have not been scheduled for a vote. Further delays will cause disruptions in HUD’s ability to advance its mission and in the operations of its offices. Affordable, accessible, and decent housing is a universal right, and political polarization should not be allowed to undermine HUD’s ability to complete its critical work in communities across the nation.
Read the Senate committee’s press release on the executive session at: https://bit.ly/3qM0I7O
See NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel’s tweet thread on the impacts of the vote at: https://bit.ly/3IBs8mX
Find more information on S. Res. 27 at: https://bit.ly/33Sq1vY