In a Friday night letter to Biden, first reported by Politico, the caucus acknowledged the Democrat’s nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas as secretary of Homeland Security and California Attorney General Xavier Becerra as secretary of Health and Human Services. Both have Latino backgrounds, but the letter stressed the importance of adding a woman to that list.
“In our view, it is essential that the next Cabinet reflects the diverse communities, especially Latino communities, which have been driving America’s businesses and economic growth for years,” the letter said. “In addition, it is a top priority that a Latina be nominated to serve in a top Cabinet position.”
The letter, signed by 12 people, noted that Biden had yet to fill the role for administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA) and secretary of Education.
The caucus reminded Biden of its previous support of Lily Eskelsen Garcia for secretary of Education, but said Miguel Cardona also had its “enthusiastic endorsement” for the position, providing two Latino candidates for the role.
The group threw its support behind Stacie Olivares for SBA administrator.
The Congressional Hispanic Caucus has pushed to see more Latinos in Biden’s cabinet to better represent the size of the U.S. Latino population – something Biden vowed to tackle in his repeated promise to make his cabinet the “most diverse in history.”
Biden has so far attempted to make good on his promise to not only diversify his cabinet, but to make sure both Republicans and Democrats can find allies in his administration.
The president-elect has so far made several historical selections by choosing the first Native American cabinet secretary, the first openly gay cabinet member, the first female national intelligence director and the first Latino Homeland Security secretary.
But there are still coalitions calling for greater representation in Biden’s cabinet, like the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.
In a November letter, the group asked Biden to consider having at least 7% of his cabinet be Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) as they make up “seven percent of the U.S. population and [are] the fastest growing racial group in the nation.”
So far Biden has nominated Neera Tanden, who is of Indian descent, to be director of the Office of Management and Budget. And Vice President-elect Kamala Harris is both Jamaican and Indian.
Former President Obama had three AAPI cabinet members while President Trump had two.