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Senate panel advances Biden's Postal Service nominees

Senate panel advances Biden's Postal Service nominees
© Greg Nash

A Senate committee on Wednesday advanced President BidenJoe BidenMellman: Trump voters cling to 2020 tale FDA authorizes another batch of J&J vaccine Cotton warns of China collecting athletes' DNA at 2022 Olympics MORE’s nominees for the U.S. Postal Service, setting up a final confirmation vote in the full chamber.

Members of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee approved three nominees for the Postal Service Board of Governors: Anton Hajjar, Amber McReynolds and Ronald Stroman.

The Senate panel also approved Kiran Ahuja to become director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the only nominee of the four who was advanced in a strictly party-line vote on Wednesday.

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Ranking member Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanHillicon Valley: Big Tech critic Lina Khan named chair of the FTC | Lawmakers urge Biden to be tough on cyber during summit with Putin | TSA working on additional security regulations following Colonial Pipeline hack Senators introducing B bill to help narrow digital divide How Biden can get the infrastructure bill through Congress MORE (R-Ohio) crossed party lines in voting for Biden's three Postal Service picks. Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyChina's genocide must be stopped How Biden can get the infrastructure bill through Congress The Hill's 12:30 Report: Sights and sounds from Biden's European trip MORE (R-Utah) also voted to advance McReynolds and Stroman.

Should each of the Postal Service nominees be confirmed by the full Senate, Democratic appointees would represent a majority of the Postal Service board.

That could give Democrats enough votes to remove Postmaster General Louis DeJoyLouis DeJoyFBI investigating political fundraising of former employees of Postmaster General DeJoy Postal Service raises stamps to 58 cents as part of restructuring plan Lawmakers request investigation into Postal Service's covert operations program MORE, whose time as head the Postal Service has led to decreases in mail delivery standards, The Washington Post noted.

Additionally, DeJoy, who previously donated to the committee that ran the Republican National Convention, was under scrutiny last year amid the increased use of mail-in ballots during the election.

Some congressional Democrats have called on the Postal Service board to fire DeJoy. Earlier this month, Sen. Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthTaiwan reports incursion by dozens of Chinese warplanes Concerns grow over China's Taiwan plans China conducts amphibious landing drill near Taiwan after senators' visit MORE (D-Ill.) called on her supporters via Twitter to urge the board to fire the organization’s chief executive.

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Additionally, House Democrats last month introduced the DEJOY Act, aimed at blocking changes outlined in the postmaster general’s 10-year plan to reduce financial losses within the U.S. Postal Service.

All four nominees that advanced Wednesday had testified before the Senate panel last week.

Stroman previously served as deputy postmaster general, and Hajjar is the former general counsel of the American Postal Workers Union. McReynolds is the CEO of the nonpartisan National Vote at Home Institute.

Ahuja previously served in the Obama administration as the executive director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

—Updated at 1:38 p.m.