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Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Biden is nominating former New Mexico Rep. Xochitl Torres Small to be under secretary of rural development at the Department of Agriculture.

Why it matters: By finding a spot for Torres Small, a young Latina leader who lost her congressional seat after one term, Biden is seeking to ensure that the Democratic Party has a deep – and diverse – bench for the future.

  • "She was a rising congressional star, but was one of those few members of Congress who has to run in districts that are very tight from cycle to cycle," said Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas). "I always knew she had a bright future, whether it was in Congress, or outside Congress."
  • Torres Small, 36, is from southern New Mexico and served on the House Agriculture Committee during her time in Congress.

The big picture: Biden continues to make diversity a priority as he fills out his sub-Cabinet and names his ambassadors. On Friday, he'll also announce four other nominees.

  • Laura Daniel-Davis, who served as a chief of staff at the Interior Department under President Obama, to be Interior's assistant secretary for land and minerals management.
  • Hampton Dellinger, a former deputy attorney general in the North Carolina Department of Justice, to be DOJ's assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Policy.
  • Camille Calimlim Touton, a former congressional staffer and Obama Interior official, to be Interior's commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation.
  • Christi Grimm, whom former President Trump removed as acting inspector general for the Department of Health and Human Services for her critical report on PPE and COVID testing shortages, will be nominated as the permanent HHS inspector general.

Go deeper

Updated 33 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Congress passes $2.1B Capitol security funding bill

U.S. Capitol police officers testify during a House select committee hearing on the Jan. 6 Capitol riot on July 27. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/Pool via Xinhua

A $2.1 billion Capitol security funding bill is heading to President Biden for his signature after the House and Senate passed the legislation on Thursday.

Why it matters: The legislation provides funding for the Capitol Police, the National Guard and other agencies to cover the costs incurred during the Jan. 6 riot.

Biden details new vaccination initiatives as COVID cases surge

Joe Biden. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

President Biden detailed several new initiatives on Thursday to get more Americans vaccinated and slow the spread of the Delta variant.

Why it matters: The plan outlines aggressive next steps from the federal government as COVID-19 cases surge across the country due to the contagious Delta variant and as demand for vaccines has tapered off.

Ex-Cardinal McCarrick charged with sexually assaulting teen in 1970s

Theodore McCarrick in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who was defrocked in 2019, has been charged with sexually assaulting a teenage boy in the 1970s, AP reports.

Why it matters: McCarrick is the first cardinal in the U.S. to "ever be criminally charged with a sexual crime against a minor," AP notes, citing Mitchell Garabedian, a lawyer for the man allegedly abused by McCarrick.

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