Harris casts tie-breaking vote to confirm Kiran Ahuja as OPM head

Lalit K Jha

Washington

US Vice President Kamala Harris has cast her tie-breaking vote in the bitterly divided Senate to confirm the nomination of Indian-American Kiran Ahuja as the head of the Office of Personnel Management, a federal agency that manages the country’s more than two million civil servants.

An American lawyer and activist, Ahuja, 49, is the first Indian-American to serve in this top position in the US government. Harris announced to cast her vote in favour of Ahuja on Tuesday after the Senate vote on this resulted in 50-50 votes on party lines.

“The Senate being evenly divided, the Vice President votes in affirmative,” Harris said.

With this, she has so far cast the 6th tie-breaking vote as the Vice President this year. Senator Dianne Feinstein said Ahuja has more than 2 decades of experience in public service and the philanthropic sector, including a senior role in OPM under former president Barack Obama.

“She has a breadth of knowledge and experience that will serve her well in the role,” she said.

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