Feb 2, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Senate confirms Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary

Picture of Pete Buttigieg
Photo: Stefani Reynolds - Pool/Getty Images

The Senate on Wednesday voted 86-13 to confirm Pete Buttigieg as secretary of transportation.

Why it matters: The former South Bend, Indiana, mayor is the first openly gay man to be confirmed as a Cabinet member. At 39, he is also the youngest person to head the department.

The big picture: The Department of Transportation will play an important role in President Biden’s plans to fight climate change and revitalize the country's infrastructure as part of his "Build Back Better" agenda.

  • During his confirmation hearings, Buttigieg pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by pushing the use of electric vehicles and introducing new federal automotive fuel economy standards.
  • While Republican senators warned of potential disagreements in regard to updating infrastructure, they also said they looked forward to having future discussions with Buttigieg on the topic.

Catch up quick: The Senate has already confirmed several other Cabinet nominees:

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