President-Elect Biden’s Cabinet Candidates Begin to Emerge

November 20, 2020

Once installed, President-elect Biden’s cabinet will shift the direction of policy development and enforcement practices in areas important to HR Policy Members.  The Association has provided an overview of the names being floated for the roles that have implications for the HR functions of large companies, and their status in the confirmation process.

Labor weighing in:  The labor movement hopes to establish influence in the Department of Labor with several candidates with union backgrounds, including Rep. Andy Levin (D-MI) and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.  Another name often mentioned is Harvard Law Professor Sharon Block, who will be speaking at our Future Workplace Policy Council’s Fall conference.

Coming to terms:  Several key agencies—the NLRB, EEOC, and SEC in particular—have term limits for their respective Members or Commissioners.  In the SEC, Chair Jay Clayton announced he is stepping down early, paving the way for a Democratic majority on the Commission (see separate story here).  However, the NLRB will retain its Republican majority until at least fall of 2021, and the EEOC will remain in Republican control until mid-2022 if the Republican members of those agencies serve through the end of their terms. 

It all boils down to the Senate:  If Republicans win one or both Georgia Senate seats, they will have the ability to block nominees who are further to the left.  If Democrats win both seats, they will have an easier time approving nominees, but will need the votes of every Democratic Senator and Vice President Harris, assuming no Republicans break ranks.