“Personal attacks”? Does a criminal theft record qualify as a “personal attack” when it comes to presidential nominations to positions of public trust? YMMV, but as Senator Tim Scott declares during the confirmation hearing for Saule Omarova, none of his colleagues have brought it up despite Democrats’ complaints about “personal attacks.” Instead, Scott tells Joe Biden’s nominee for Comptroller of the Currency, he’ll just stick to what Omarova herself has written or spoken to demonstrate how unfit for the office she truly is.
In four minutes-plus, Scott deftly puts the onus on Senate Democrats in defending this radical-Marxist nominee:
Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) to Biden's Comptroller of the Currency nominee: "I don't have any questions for you because there's nothing you can say today to undo what you've said for years, including this year." pic.twitter.com/ygIKJWkRZj
— Spencer Brown (@itsSpencerBrown) November 18, 2021
As I wrote yesterday, the issue of the misdemeanor theft charge in 1995 might not be terribly material, but it’s not nothing either. It’s part of her public record, whether or not it’s convenient for Omarova or the White House. After all, in a nation of 330 million people, there may be one or two without criminal theft on their record who could qualify for a high-ranking Treasury position.
However, as Scott makes clear, Omarova’s long record on hostility toward the US banking system and capitalism in general is much more disqualifying for this position. Scott didn’t have time to get to the point I raised earlier, although he brought up the same structural concern via other public Omarova statements:
One has to wonder how many other Senate Democrats want to sign up for a plan that would cut Congress out the loop on spending decisions by enabling the executive branch to gather its own funding by seizing private capital. This is a recipe for an authoritarian state, not a federal representative republic.
That’s entirely the thrust of Omarova’s public philosophy, as Scott detailed through her own words. The question isn’t whether an old peccadillo should sideline Omarova, but why Joe Biden ever nominated her in the first place. Forget the criminal-history vetting — did anyone at the White House bother to read through Omarova’s writings before nominating her for this position? Especially with a 50/50 split in the Senate?
Senate Democrats may ask the same question, Bloomberg/Quint notes:
Because the Senate is 50-50 and Republicans have indicated they are uniformly opposed to Omarova, all eyes will be on some key moderate Democrats on the panel, including Senators Jon Tester of Montana, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Mark Warner of Virginia.
In questioning Omarova, Warner said he was “pretty disappointed” about some of her past positions on bipartisan banking legislation. Tester said he had “significant concerns” about some of her positions during the hearing. He later told reporters that he has additional questions for the nominee and will announce whether or not he will vote to support her “soon.”
Maybe the next time that “moderate” Joe Biden tries to fill this slot, he could choose someone 30% less Marxist or so. Because right now it looks pretty clear that there will be a next time.