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Biden quietly places unconfirmed labor secretary in presidential line of succession, drawing GOP criticism

Senate Republicans are expressing frustration with the Biden administration over its decision to add Acting Secretary of Labor Julie Su — whose nomination to the role was never confirmed — to the presidential line of succession.

In a Tuesday letter to President Biden, Alabama GOP Sen. Katie Britt and 29 of her Republican Senate colleagues expressed “grave concerns” and requested clarification from the administration for its “apparent belief” that Su is “eligible to assume the office of President of the United States pursuant to the presidential line of succession as established by Congress in the Presidential Succession Act of 1947.”

“As you are well aware, since March 14, 2023, the United States Senate has declined to confirm Ms. Su’s nomination as Secretary of Labor, and she continues to lack adequate support from both Republican and Democratic members of the Senate to be confirmed to that position,” the senators wrote. “Despite that reality and Ms. Su becoming the longest-ever Cabinet nominee to await confirmation in a time when the same party controls the White House and the Senate, the White House has chosen to keep her in place as Acting Secretary of Labor on an indefinite basis and has also listed her on the White House website as a member of the Cabinet ‘[i]n order of succession to the Presidency.’”

The nomination of Su, who has been serving as acting secretary since the resignation of Marty Walsh in March, was narrowly approved by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in April. However, Su has not received a vote by the full Senate, where it is unlikely Su would be confirmed to the post.

In addition to Britt, the letter from Senate Republicans to Biden was signed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.; Senate GOP Whip John Thune, R-S.D.; Senate GOP Conference Chair John Barrasso, R-Wyo.; Republican Policy Committee Chair Joni Ernst, R-Iowa; and Vice Chair of the Senate Republican Conference Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., among others.

Kyle Morris covers politics for Fox News. Story tips can be sent to and on Twitter: @RealKyleMorris.


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