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Biden’s decide to steer the FAA withdraws from nomination

CNN  — 

President Joe Biden’s decide to steer the Federal Aviation Administration is withdrawing his identify from nomination attributable to “an onslaught of unfounded Republican assaults” on the nominee’s service and expertise, a White Home official informed CNN.

Phillip Washington’s nomination was first introduced by the White Home final 12 months, however has confronted robust criticism from Republican lawmakers over a lot of points, together with Washington’s slim aviation credentials and his potential authorized entanglements.

The White Home respects Washington’s resolution to withdraw his identify and praised his public service document and {qualifications} to steer the FAA, the official mentioned.

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation was scheduled to vote on Washington’s nomination on Wednesday, however that vote was postponed. A Republican Senate aide informed CNN after the postponed vote that “he was pulled as a result of they don’t have the votes to report him out of committee.”

As a result of Republicans remained unified of their opposition to Washington’s potential management, “his nomination is on life help,” the aide mentioned.

The nomination withdrawal was first reported by Reuters.

Washington, the present CEO of the Denver Worldwide Airport, has held management roles at municipal transit organizations, together with in Denver and Los Angeles, centered on bus and rail traces. He additionally led the Biden-Harris transition crew for the Division of Transportation. Previous to his work in transportation, Washington served within the army for 24 years.

Whereas Washington has labored in transportation-related positions since 2000, he had no expertise within the aviation trade previous to becoming a member of the Denver airport in 2021 – one thing that turned a serious concern amongst committee members.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Saturday highlighted the necessity for a confirmed FAA administrator as he condemned the “partisan assaults” on Washington.

“The FAA wants a confirmed Administrator, and Phil Washington’s transportation & army expertise made him a superb nominee. The partisan assaults and procedural obstruction he has confronted are undeserved, however I respect his resolution to withdraw and am grateful for his service,” Buttigieg mentioned in a tweet.

The White Home will work to pick a brand new nominee to steer the FAA, the official mentioned.

“Politics should not maintain up confirming an Administrator to steer the FAA, and we’ll transfer expeditiously to appoint a brand new candidate for FAA Administrator. We imagine the Senate owes it to the American folks to swiftly think about and ensure a pacesetter to this key security company,” the official mentioned.

This story has been up to date with extra info.

CNN’s Maegan Vazquez contributed to this report.

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