Senate Committee blocks Biden pick for head of National Archives, amid Trump raid controversy

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee has blocked President Joe Biden’s nominee to head the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The move may amount to onl a temporary delay.

The block after the committee deadlocked 7-7 on whether to advance Colleen Shogan to a confirmation vote, the Washington Examiner reported. According to reports, “Senate rules allow for the committee’s chair to report that result to the Senate, and gives the Senate Majority Leader the opportunity to bring the nomination to the full Senate through a discharge motion.”

The confirmation process would not normally engender such controversy, but NARA’s role in launching an FBI raid and  legal battle over former President Donald Trump’s handling of presidential documents has led Republicans to scrutinize NARA to a greater degree than usual. 

NARA previously sought the return of documents Trump had in his possession. Trump and the government differed over what documents he was entitled to keep, and which ones are currently declassified.

Trump originally voluntarily cooperated with a grand jury subpoena seeking their return, but the FBI later raided his estate in a controversial move to gather more materials.

During the committee hearing, Republicans asked Shogan about the alleged politicization of NARA in connection to that dispute. The nominee denied having been briefed on the issue, which critics said rang as either false or wildly irresponsible.

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