Five Senators Oppose Omarova Nomination for OCC

Dec 1, 2021Congressional Legislation, Federal Regulation, News

Last week, five Democratic Senators told the White House that they oppose the Biden Administration’s pick to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Saule Omarova. With Republicans widely opposed to the nomination, the Democratic defections are all but certain to sink her nomination for the position.

Both Democrats and Republicans have vocalized opposition to Omarova’s nomination, expressing policy concerns with her academic writings about reining in big banks. Republicans have attacked Omarova’s upbringing and made her nomination a battle on how banks should be regulated.

The Democratic Senators’ resistance shows their willingness to combat the White House on an important nomination, even if it results in a political victory for Republicans.

The opposition came from Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Mark Warner (D-va.), and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.)—all members of the Senate Banking Committee—as well as Senators John Hickenlooper (D-Colo.) and Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.). The Senators’ offices either declined to comment or did not respond to a comment request.

Biden officials noted that they have heard from the Senators. Although Omarova now faces nearly impossible chances for nomination, the Administration continues to publicly support her. A White House official told Axios that she is “eminently qualified for this position.”

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