US Senate confirms Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary
Washington: The US Senate voted to approve Pete Buttigieg as President Joe Biden’s transportation secretary.
The 86-13 vote has made Buttigieg the first openly gay individual confirmed to lead a Cabinet department in US history, Xinhua news agency reported on Tuesday.
During his confirmation hearing last month, Buttigieg said the Department of Transportation “can play a central role” in rebuilding the US economy, which has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Buttigieg, 39, is expected to be part of the Biden administration’s push for a bipartisan infrastructure package.
Former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Buttigieg was a top contender for the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee but dropped out to endorse Biden early in the primaries.
In 2014, Buttigieg, a Harvard graduate and Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, was deployed for six months to Afghanistan as a US intelligence officer.
The US Senate will vote later in the day confirming Alejandro Mayorkas as Biden’s homeland security secretary.
The upper chamber has previously approved Biden’s Cabinet nominees for secretaries of state, treasury, and defence, as well as director of national intelligence.