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Garcetti clears Senate Foreign Relations Committee

The date for the final full Senate vote is yet to be scheduled.

Image - Wikimedia 

The Biden White House has heaved a sigh of relief as its Ambassador nominee to India, Eric Garcetti, finally cleared the Senate Foreign Relations Committee but not before two Republican Senators joined their Democratic colleagues to push a 13 to 8 margin in the end.

The nomination of Garcetti has been with the Senate since the time President Joe Biden came to the Oval Office in 2021 but came to be bogged down for two years on allegations that the former Mayor of Los Angeles had not handled sexual allegations against a staffer properly.

When the 118th Congress convened this January President Biden once again re-nominated Garcetti for the position. Biden could not force a recess appointment as Republicans legislatively manoeuvred to make sure that the Senate never did have a “recess”.

Even now while some maintain that Garcetti may have cleared the biggest hurdle and could have enough votes in the full Senate, some maintain that the nomination could still be blocked by individual Senators. The date for the final full Senate vote is yet to be scheduled.

Political analysts have been saying for quite sometime that having the top envoy’s position vacant in New Delhi was not in the best interests of Washington especially at a time when bilateral relations were going through an uptick in spite of challenges. But this was a process on which New Delhi had very little hold over, if any.

“Simply put, the United States needs a confirmed ambassador in India … we certainly hope that the action that the Senate took today foretells additional action. US needs a confirmed Ambassador in India... There is no other country around the world that would put itself in a position to have a vacancy open in a strategically important and valuable place like India for two-plus years," said State Department Spokesman Ned Price.