Xavier Becerra Confirmed as HHS Secretary by Senate
The Senate confirmed Xavier Becerra as HHS secretary in a narrow 50-49 vote, with just one Republican — Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) — siding with Democrats to support his confirmation. One Democrat abstained.
The vote came after contentious committee hearings last month, when Republicans lambasted Becerra over his support for abortion rights, lack of medical experience and prior backing of a patent waiver mechanism during the pandemic, among other policy positions.
As California’s attorney general, Becerra defended the Affordable Care Act at the Supreme Court in November 2020, and he previously represented the state in the House of Representatives from 1992 to 2017.
With the March18 confirmation vote, Becerra became the first Latino head of HHS