WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has selected a senior adviser, Neera Tanden, to replace Susan Rice as his domestic policy adviser, the White House said in a statement.
Tanden, a longtime Democratic aide who served in two previous presidential administrations, will assume one of the most senior policy posts in the administration, covering most areas outside of national security and the economy.
As Biden’s staff secretary, Tanden has already played an important role in the West Wing, controlling schedules, briefing books and other documents that arrive on the president’s desk.
Stefanie Feldman, a Rice aide who has long been one of the top political minds in Biden’s orbit, will replace Tanden as staff secretary.
“Neera oversaw the decision-making processes on my national, economic, and national security teams,” Biden said in a statement touting 25 years of public policy experience. “She was a key architect of the Affordable Care Act and helped push key domestic policies that became part of my agenda, including clean energy subsidies and sensible gun reform.”
Tanden’s predecessor on the domestic policy council, Susan Rice, left after a two-year term that included wrangling over tense issues ranging from immigration to health care, guns and police reform.
The move comes as Biden continues to face some obstacles on immigration after vowing to reverse nearly all of the restrictive policies imposed by his Republican predecessor, Donald Trump. The United States plans to lift COVID-19 restrictions next week that block migrants trying to cross the US-Mexico border illegally.
Tanden, long seen as a lightning rod for her sharply worded tweets, was appointed to her current behind-the-scenes job after being forced to withdraw her nomination to be budget chief amid fierce opposition from Republicans and Sen. Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat.
While Tanden has been attacked by Republicans for her left-wing views, she also sparred with the progressive camp over her support for Clinton against Sen. Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Democratic presidential race, and was criticized for backing cuts in the Social Security retirement program to balance the budget nearly a decade ago.