In a narrow 51–49 vote largely along party lines, Mick Mulvaney — the Republican Congressman representing South Carolina’s 5th District — was confirmed Thursday afternoon to helm the White House’s budget office, the New YorkTimesreports.
As the director of the Trump administration’s Office of Management and Budget, Mulvaney will oversee the architecture of the federal budget as well as assess the performance of other federal agencies.
Mulvaney was a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus, the far right-wing congressional group that stemmed from the Tea Party movement’s political momentum. NPR reports that Mulvaney played “a prominent role” in the 2013 budget crises that led to a two-week shutdown of the federal government.
Donald Trump, who campaigned around keeping the architecture of most entitlement programs intact, could find himself at odds with Mulvaney, an advocate for raising the age of eligibility for Social Security and “drastic changes” to Medicare.
Arizona Senator John McCain voted against Mulvaney on Thursday, arguing that Mulvaney’s desire to cap defense spending made him an “irresponsible” pick for the job.