This vote was one of those cases where Republicans could have killed a major Biden nomination.
Nominating former Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti as ambassador to India was an insult to an important ally and a clear payback to special interests. The claims that he know about sexual harassment allegations had split the Democrats. After years of trying, the nomination passed by a narrow 52-42 margin.
Thanks to Senator Lindsey Graham and a few GOPers.
The Senate confirmed former Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s nomination to become U.S. ambassador to India, capping off months of limbo over his fate.
Garcetti’s won confirmation on a 52-42 vote, with seven GOP senators supporting him and three Democrats voting no.
Democratic Sens. Mark Kelly (Ariz.), Sherrod Brown (Ohio) and Mazie Hirono (Hawaii) all voted against advancing Garcetti. Meanwhile, Republican Sens. Bill Cassidy (La.), Susan Collins (Maine), Steve Daines (Mont.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Roger Marshall (Kan.), Young and Hagerty crossed party lines to support Garcetti.
This nomination was a priority for the Biden administration. It wouldn’t have happened without Lindsey.
The former Los Angeles mayor and aides around him had come to view it as a fight for his very reputation and political viability. President Joe Biden did so, too.
That’s because it was. Garcetti’s future in big-league elected politics would have dimmed considerably had he failed to get to New Delhi.
Good thing Republicans protected Garcetti’s future in big-league elected politics.
For Garcetti and his team — but also to an extent the White House — it was also about survival. Get Eric to India so he can try to put this behind him…
And it’s why Biden’s top legislative affairs staffers, Louisa Terrell and Reema Dodin, along with Garcetti, scrambled into the final hours to secure a few more votes.
A loyal and early ally for the president, Garcetti was diplomatic about how long senators took to hold their floor vote.
“I can’t tell you how many senators said I talked to X, Y and Z who went to college with you, the person who married you, the person who heads up an organization who’s known you for 20 years, who’s traveled with you for two or three weeks. Those sorts of things meant a lot to people,” Garcetti said.
As for his political future, he doesn’t deny rumors about eyeing a possible statewide run in California, perhaps for governor when Gavin Newsom steps down. Possibilities like that, after all, may now be there when he returns.
Good thing, Lindsey had the back of a possible future governor.
Republicans could have humiliated Biden and showed that he was unable to deliver on favors to a subset of Democrat donors which would have hurt his fundraising. They could have killed Garcetti’s career. But this was so much better.