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Biden defends Cabinet choices after criticism: 'Most diverse Cabinet' in history

Biden defends Cabinet choices after criticism: 'Most diverse Cabinet' in history
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President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden 'disappointed' in Senate parliamentarian ruling but 'respects' decision Taylor Swift celebrates House passage of Equality Act Donald Trump Jr. calls Bruce Springsteen's dropped charges 'liberal privilege' MORE in an interview on Thursday defended his Cabinet picks as he faces pressure from critics who say his nominees are not diverse enough.

"I'm going to keep my commitment that the administration, both in the White House and outside in the Cabinet, is going to look like the country," Biden told CNN's Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperEx-Trump press secretary criticized for stirring up QAnon on Twitter Maryland GOP governor says he would have voted to convict Trump Democratic senator defends decision not to call witnesses: 'They weren't going to get more Republican votes' MORE on Thursday. 

The president-elect went on to tout his current slate of nominees as "the most diverse Cabinet anyone in American history has ever announced." 

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Biden has nominated Linda Thomas-Greenfield, a Black woman, to serve as ambassador to the United Nations and Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasHillicon Valley: Privacy, immigrant rights groups slam 'smart wall' proposal | New DHS policies aim to fight cyber 'epidemic' | Twitter exploring allowing users to charge for content The Memo: Biden faces first major setback as Tanden teeters DHS Secretary Mayorkas announces new initiative to fight 'epidemic' of cyberattacks MORE to serve as the Homeland Security security. Mayorkas would be the first Latin person hold the role if confirmed. He has also nominated Avril Haines to be the director of national intelligence and Janet YellenJanet Louise YellenPoll: Biden approval holds steady as Democrats eye .9 T COVID-19 relief bill Senate confirms former Michigan governor Granholm as Energy secretary Stocks fall sharply as rising Treasury yields raise inflation fears MORE to serve as Treasury secretary. Both would be the first women to serve in the positions. 

Additionally, Biden has appointed a diverse pool of administration officials, including an all-female communications team. 

Biden is expected to announce more Cabinet picks in the coming weeks, but Black leaders have expressed concern about what many are saying is a lack of representation in the incoming administration. 

“You see many very capable competent individuals who are providing insight and bringing to bear some of their knowledge in [their] subject matter areas, but there [is] no one on the transition team from the civil rights community,” said NAACP President Derrick Johnson. 

Biden said on Thursday that he is scheduled to meet with the civil rights group next week.

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"Their job is to push me," Biden said, referring to advocacy organizations. 

"My job is to keep my commitment to make the decisions," he continued. "And when it's all over people will take a look and say, I promise you, you'll see the most diverse Cabinet representative of all folks, Asian Americans, African Americans, Latinos, LGBTQ, across the board."

Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisTo unite America, Biden administration must brace for hate Democratic strategists start women-run media consulting firm Grassley to vote against Tanden nomination MORE also responded to criticism from progressives that individuals from their wing of the party are not represented in the incoming administration. 

“We’re not done yet, Jake, we’re not even halfway there,” Harris said. 

Biden also noted that Mayorkas was a progressive, and said there will be other progressives serving in his administration. 

"What I think people are saying is, a lot of people are saying, am I going to pick some very, very prominent progressive who sits in the House or the Senate right now," Biden said. "As close as everything is in terms of the House and the Senate, they are tough decisions to make," he added, referring to the narrow margins in the chambers.

"I understand the push," he said.