Education

CHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report

Hispanic lawmakers are urging President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenCHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report Louisiana Rep.-elect hospitalized as a precaution for COVID-19 infection Biden and Netanyahu can carefully nourish U.S.-Israeli ties MORE to appoint more latinos to his future administration’s Cabinet.

Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) sent a letter to the Biden transition team on Friday advocating for Connecticut Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona to serve as Education Secretary, Politico reported.

They’re also urging Biden to pick Stacie Olivares to lead the Small Business Administration.

“The members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) are proud to offer our enthusiastic endorsement of Mr. Miguel Cardona for Secretary of Education and of Ms. Stacie Olivares for Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA),” the lawmakers wrote in the letter first obtained by Politico. 

The letter highlighted Cardona’s career, from being an elementary school teacher to the first Latino to be education commissioner in Connecticut. The support for Cardona is a change for the caucus, who previously endorsed Lily Eskelen García for the role.

The Hill reported on Tuesday that Eskelen García — the former president of the National Education Association — was the front-runner for the role, although several candidates were still being interviewed. 

However, the lawmakers said they still supported her.  

“We had previously sent a support letter for Lily Eskelsen Garcia for Secretary of Education and we remain strongly supportive of her,” the letter says.

The letter also highlights Olivares’ level of experience,  saying she would “lead the Small Business Administration with distinction from day one.”

Biden has been under pressure to build a Cabinet that reflects America’s diversity, and Hispanic lawmakers and organizations have pushed for Biden to appoint at least five Latino members to his Cabinet.

The letters comes after the transition team reportedly leaked that New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan GrishamMichelle Lynn Lujan GrishamCHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report Hispanic Caucus ramps up Cabinet pressure campaign The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – So many questions about COVID-19 vaccines MORE (D) turned down an offer to serve as Biden’s Interior Secretary, a position that was ultimately filled by nominee Rep. Deb HaalandDebra HaalandCHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report Biden rolls out diverse climate and energy team to enact ‘ambitious’ plan Biden: Federal government ‘has long-broken promises to Native American tribes’ MORE (D-N.M.). 

The new was surprising to the CHC, who backed Lujan Grisham to serve as Health and Human Services Secretary. 

The Caucus “laid into the transition team” during a virtual meeting on the matter, expressing frustration at the way Lujan Grisham was treated.

Biden selected California Attorney General Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraCHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report Google hit with another antitrust lawsuit by states Pressley urges Newsom to appoint a Black woman to Harris’s seat MORE for that role earlier this month. 

The transition has committed to putting a Latina in a Cabinet role.

The Hill has reached out to the CHC and transition team for comment.

Biden has also selected Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasCHC urges Biden to choose Latinos to head Education Department, SBA: report Progressives push for key national security positions under Biden House GOP raise concerns over Biden’s top Cabinet nominees MORE to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the first Latino to lead the department.