Two Democratic senators opposed Rahm Emanuel arsenic U.S. ambassador to Japan successful a committee ballot Wednesday morning, though it was not capable to descend his nomination.
Sens. Ed Markey (Mass.) and Jeff Merkley (Ore.) were the 2 “no” votes connected the Foreign Relations Committee. It’s not wide whether determination volition beryllium much Democratic absorption erstwhile Emanuel goes earlier the afloat Senate for a vote.
In a connection Wednesday, Merkley explained his opposition, citing the Black Lives Matter question and feedback from civilian rights leaders.
“Black Lives Matter,” Merkley said successful his statement. “Here successful the halls of Congress, it is important that we not conscionable talk and judge these words, but enactment them into enactment successful the decisions we make. I person cautiously considered Mayor Emanuel’s grounds ― and the input of civilian rights leaders, transgression justness experts, and section elected officials who person reached retired to the Senate to measurement successful ― and I person reached the determination that I cannot enactment his information to service arsenic a U.S. Ambassador.”
Emanuel’s information is 1 of Biden’s astir arguable among progressive lawmakers. In 2019, Emanuel decided against moving for a 3rd term, leaving arsenic the least popular Chicago politician successful modern past owed to his mishandling of the sidesplitting of Laquan McDonald, a 17-year-old Black younker who was changeable by a achromatic constabulary officer.
House members including Cori Bush (D-Mo.) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) person besides spoken retired against making Emanuel ambassador.
Unless much Democrats articulation Markey and Merkley, Emanuel could inactive beryllium confirmed. He has waged an “aggressive behind-the-scenes effort” to get enactment from some Democrats and Republicans, according to The Washington Post, and helium appears to person the enactment of respective GOP senators.
But progressive choler with Emanuel goes backmost further than his clip arsenic politician of Chicago. As a House subordinate and apical advisor to presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Emanuel became known for a pro-corporate policymaking, embodied by his relation successful shepherding the North American Free Trade Agreement done transition successful 1994 and his internal objections to Obama’s pursuit of broad wellness attraction betterment successful 2010.
This portion has been updated with the committee vote.