The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee voted 9-0 this morning to confirm Jacob “Jack” Lew as the next director of the Office of Management and Budget. Lew’s nomination, announced by President Obama in July, must also win approval from the Senate Budget Committee before going to the full Senate. As of this morning, the budget committee had not scheduled a vote, according to its web site. If confirmed, Lew, 55, would replace Peter Orszag, who resigned this summer. OMB Deputy Director Jeffrey Zients is meanwhile serving as acting director.
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Well, that didn’t take long. Less than 24 hours after holding a hearing on the candidacy of Jacob “Jack” Lew to become the next Office of Management and Budget director, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee has set next Tuesday for a confirmation vote on sending his nomination to the full Senate, according to a just-released notice. Lew’s nomination also needs the blessing of the Senate Budget Committee, but no word yet on when that vote will be.
We’ve explored this question before on the blog: At a December Senate hearing, Elaine Duke, the department’s undersecretary for management, admitted DHS doesn’t really know how many contractors it has. The question came up again this week: In a letter to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee, DHS secretary Janet Napolitano said the department had roughly 200,000 contractors — more than the 188,000 civilian employees who work for the department. That number prompted an outraged reaction from senators on the committee; as I mentioned in my story yesterday, they questioned whether contractors or federal employees are “actually making…