DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA – President-elect Donald Trump recently announced his intentions to nominate three new positions: Health and Human Services Secretary, head of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and Treasury Department Secretary. Following the announcements, U.S. Sen. Orrin Hatch, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which oversees the three departments, issued statements of support.
Trump announced his intent to nominate U.S. Rep. Tom Price, R-Georgia, to serve as Health and Human Services Secretary and Seema Verma to head the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. In Hatch’s statement, he said that American middle-class families have been “financially devastated” by the Affordable Care Act.
Righting the wrongs of the misguided law is a top priority for the new Republican Congress and administration.
Congressman Price has been selected for this crucial HHS post because of his experience as a respected physician and deep understanding of the health law and its flaws.
Verma’s strong health policy background will benefit the reform effort at CMS, a mammoth agency whose responsibilities ballooned under President Obama and his health law.
As Republicans chart the course to repeal and replace the health law with patient-centered reforms that increase access to care and reduce costs, both Tom and Seema will play an integral role in leading the effort. Each recognize the fiscal challenges facing Medicare and Medicaid and the need for Congress and the Executive Branch to work together to develop better ways to shore up these programs and help guarantee they are here for our children and grandchildren. I look forward to having their nominations considered by the Finance Committee in the new year and trust my colleagues will conduct a fair examination of their qualifications and experience.
Hatch also expressed support for Trump’s intent to nominate Steven Mnuchin to serve as the Treasury Department Secretary. Again mentioning the middle class, Hatch said rebuilding the American economy will position the country for “a new era of growth and prosperity.” He said:
Steven Mnuchin will be central to helping the Republican-led Congress advance meaningful reforms that will reignite the economy with innovation, investment and job creation. Given the depth and breadth of Steven’s private sector experience, he will play a pivotal role in bicameral efforts to revamp the nation’s outdated tax code to create a healthier economic environment for American businesses and families here at home.
We will also depend on his leadership to bring greater fiscal responsibility and strengthen the nation’s struggling entitlement programs. We have a real opportunity to lay the path needed to spur economic growth and put more Americans back to work.
With a singular and storied pedigree, I look forward to having Mr. Mnuchin before the Finance Committee to further examine his vast qualifications for one of the cabinet’s most important positions in the New Year.
The U.S. Senate, as is its role under the Constitution, carefully, thoroughly and fairly vets and scrutinizes the president’s nominees, Hatch’s news release states. Each nominee that moves through the Senate Finance Committee will undergo the same bipartisan vetting process as the nominees from previous administrations.
Traditionally, each nominee is required to submit a questionnaire as well as full copies of their tax returns to the committee for review. Once the internal vetting process is completed, the Finance Committee will schedule a date for a confirmation hearing.
The Senate Finance Committee recognizes the need for a seamless transition between administrations, the news release sates, and will act in a swift and thorough manner to clear the nominees in the Committee to ensure a timely consideration by the full Senate.