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Avril Haines. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

The Senate Intelligence Committee has postponed a confirmation hearing — originally scheduled for Friday — for President-elect Biden's nominee for director of national intelligence, Avril Haines, until next week.

Why it matters: Biden's team has pushed for swift confirmation hearings for his national security nominees, especially in the context of last week's attack on the Capitol, threats of violence surrounding next week's inauguration and global political tensions.

  • The hearing was slated to take place in a virtual setting, which would have required the consent of all senators who sit on the panel.
  • Haines, who served as CIA deputy director from 2013 to 2015, and deputy national security adviser from 2015 to 2017, would be the first woman to lead the intelligence community.

What they're saying: "Despite the unusual circumstances on Capitol Hill, the committee is working in good faith to move this nominee as fast as possible and ensure the committee's members have an opportunity to question the nominee in both open and closed settings," Sens. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.), the top two senators on the committee, said in a joint statement.

  • "The Director of National Intelligence plays a crucial role in overseeing the 18 agencies that make up our nation's Intelligence Community, and the committee looks forward to holding a hearing next week with Ms. Haines."

Go deeper

Senate confirms Antony Blinken as secretary of state

Antony Blinken. Photo: Alex Edelman/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

The Senate voted 78-22 on Tuesday to confirm Antony Blinken as secretary of state.

Why it matters: Blinken, a longtime adviser to President Biden, will lead the administration's diplomatic efforts to re-engage with the world after four years of former President Trump's "America first" policy.

Tim Scott hopes to reintroduce version of GOP police reform bill

Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) told reporters Wednesday he plans to reintroduce his police reform bill or a similar proposal in the coming weeks, and that he has discussed a potential compromise with Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) and Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

Why it matters: Eyes have again turned to Washington to take steps to address police reform in the wake of Derek Chauvin's guilty verdict Tuesday, after efforts stalled in Congress last year.

Biden announces small business tax credits for vaccine PTO

Photo: Doug Mills/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden on Wednesday will call on all employers to provide employees paid time off to get vaccinated or to recover from any side effects, and he'll include a paid tax credit for small businesses to do so, administration officials said.

Why it matters: The administration sees places of work as highly influential in making shots more convenient for working adults who are in high-risk industries.