Despite the concerns of pro-life advocates, it appears like Xavier Becerra will be confirmed as the Secretary of Health and Human Services. This will put babies and women at risk, as the prominent pro-abortion and anti-undercover journalism activist will likely strip away at conscience and other protections for those that support life.
Originally there were questions about whether Becerra’s nomination would go through. As California’s Attorney General, Becerra has gone after pro-life groups, like Little Sisters of the Poor and NIFLA, and has led litigation against David Daleiden, whose undercover videos about Planned Parenthood’s alleged profiting of preborn remains went viral in 2015.
Due to the controversial nature of his nomination, Becerra was unable to gather enough support for his nomination to leave the Senate Finance Committee. However, that’s now changed.
Early on March 11, pro-life West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin announced that he would support Becerra’s nomination. Senator Susan Collins of Maine soon followed suit. This puts Becerra above the majority threshold needed for his nomination to advance and essentially ensures that he will clinch the role as well.
Both of the senators cited Becerra’s voiced commitment to work on rural health issues as the reason.
In addition, Collins said that Becerra has also promised to work on the “shared goals” of lowering the costs of prescription drugs and growing U.S. prescription drug-making operations, which would lessen the reliance on foreign markets.
“Although there are issues where I strongly disagree with Mr. Becerra, I believe he merits confirmation as HHS Secretary,” she said. “I look forward to working with the Department to achieve bipartisan results on behalf of the American people.”
Manchin’s press release stated, “As our nation faces deep divides and a healthcare crisis that has taken the lives of far too many Americans, we must commit to working together to heal our nation. While Attorney General Xavier Becerra and I have very different records on issues like abortion and the Second Amendment, he has affirmed to me his dedication to working with Members on both sides of the aisle to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the numerous needs of our nation in a bipartisan way.
Previously, Becerra’s nomination was stalled in the Senate Finance Committee, as the two political parties remained gridlocked on his nomination. But with swing voters Manchin and Collins supporting Becerra, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s bid to bring his nomination to the full upper chamber and bypassing the Finance Committee will succeed.
It’s a disappointing outcome to pro-life supporters, who hoped that Becerra’s controversial history would prevent his ascension to the position.
“There’s a reason Mr. Becerra could not get one single Republican vote to move out of committee,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a press release. “It’s because he is such a thoroughly partisan actor with so little subject-matter expertise and such a demonstrated history of hostility toward basic values like the freedom of conscience. There is nothing about Mr. Becerra’s record in Congress or in California to suggest he is the best possible person to run the Department of Health and Human Services in the middle of a once-in-a-generation viral pandemic. Not even close.”
McConnell continued, “This is too important a job at too important a time for this Administration to put raw partisanship ahead of qualifications. I strongly urge all Senators to vote against rescuing this nomination from committee. Let’s give the President the opportunity to make a better selection.”
As this pro-abortion administration continues to take shape, it’s disheartening to see one of the nation’s most prominent and litigious cabinet nominations go through.
Photo from POOL/REUTERS