Following his media-declared victory in last month’s presidential election, Democratic nominee Joe Biden went on to name an array of nominees to various Cabinet and administration posts.
Despite the former vice president’s repeated promise to reflect the nation’s diversity in his prospective administration, his team is reiterating that focus in the wake of criticism from some progressive activists who are less than thrilled with his picks thus far.
“Continuing to do that”
The message came through loud and clear during a conference call on Friday between reporters and Biden campaign spokeswoman Kate Bedingfield.
Tapped as White House communications director should Biden assume office next month, she declared that her boss “certainly understands and hears and welcomes the voices that are pushing him on diversity” while maintaining that the transition team is focused on achieving those goals.
“The president-elect is committed to selecting the most qualified individuals for each job, people who are going to bring diverse perspectives, who are going to bring diverse life stories to the table,” Bedingfield added.
She contended that Biden has demonstrated that commitment “in the nominees he has roled out thus far, and he’s certainly committed to continuing to do that.”
Nevertheless, a number of Democratic Party leaders have complained that Biden’s picks have not been sufficiently representative of their disparate demands, as Politico reported.
“Step it up”
Notable examples include advocates for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, members of the Congressional Black Caucus, and Latino lawmakers, each of whom insisted that Biden needed to include more diversity within the ranks of his emerging team.
One unidentified lawmaker told Politico that Biden has “got to step it up” in terms of nominating Black individuals to his Cabinet.
The source went on to assert that selecting Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) as his running mate did not grant the nominee any leniency when it comes to representing the Black community in other prominent posts.
In a similar report on Friday, the Associated Press described mounting pressure on the Biden transition team to prioritize diversity in future picks.
During a news conference on Friday, Biden declared: “I promise you, it’ll be the single most diverse Cabinet based on race, color, based on gender, that’s ever existed in the United States of America.”