Nov 25, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Clyburn says Biden not naming enough Black Cabinet members

Biden Clyburn.

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) told The Hill on Wednesday that Joe Biden has so far fallen short when it comes to appointing Black people to his Cabinet.

Why it matters: Clyburn, a Biden ally, played a crucial role in helping secure the president-elect's path to the White House during the Democratic primary. His endorsement was pivotal in reviving the former VP's campaign when it appeared to be flailing.

What he's saying: Clyburn expressed support for the selection of Linda Thomas-Greenfield, a Black diplomat who served in the Obama administration, to be ambassador to the United Nations. But Clyburn said that choice was not enough.

  • “From all I hear, Black people have been given fair consideration,” Clyburn said. “But there is only one Black woman so far."
  • "I want to see where the process leads to, what it produces," he added. "But so far it’s not good.”
  • An official with Biden's transition team told The Hill the diversity of the Cabinet "will be clear when our full slate of appointees and nominees is complete."

Clyburn listed some of his preferred choices to serve in the Biden administration:

  • For secretary of housing and urban development, he's hopeful Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown will be the pick.
  • For attorney general, Clyburn said he would like to see either California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.) or former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates tapped for the role.

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