President Barack Obama renominated Dr. Donald Berwick to the position of CMS administrator, a move praised by the American Hospital Association but likely to face strong GOP opposition during the Senate confirmation process.
Obama sends Berwick back for confirmation
"We're very supportive of Dr. Berwick," said Linda Fishman, the AHA's senior vice president of public policy analysis and development. Under Berwick, the CMS has "been very open and willing to listen to the provider community," Fishman said. "He has a good vision for CMS and a good vision for healthcare."
Obama named Berwick to the position in a congressional recess appointment in July, allowing Berwick to bypass the Senate approval process and serve through 2011. GOP members opposed Berwick's nomination then and likely would now.
Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, was quick out of the gate with a response. "A day after the president committed to coming together to move our country forward, he's chosen to renominate one of his most contentious nominees to head an agency that impacts the lives of more than 100 million Americans," Hatch said in a news release. "This is a disappointing decision."
Fishman said she's not sure if Berwick can get the needed 60 votes in the Senate.
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