Media outlets have begun reporting that the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) is planning on holding a confirmation hearing for HHS nominee, Rep. Tom Price, M.D. (R-Ga.), prior to the nomination to President-elect Trump taking the oath of office. Morning Consult has reported that an aide to Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn) gave an unofficial date of January 18th for a hearing.
In the confirmation process for the position there are two Senate committees that hold jurisdiction, HELP and the Finance Committee. The Finance Committee, chaired by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), will hold the official vote on the appointment. The Finance Committee has not officially released dates for hearings, followers can likely expect them shortly after the HELP committee begins their hearing process.
The nomination is likely to be hotly contested by Democrats as the GOP-controlled Congress works through the process of repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. As this is a focal point of the GOP and President-elect Trump, the Senate will attempt to move the nomination as quickly as possible. Rep. Price has been an outspoken critic of the ACA, including the provisions which rollout out the competitive bidding program into rural America. VGM will continue to report key developments on the nomination moving forward.