The Senate confirmed President Donald Trump’s nominee to head the Department of Health and Human Services, Georgia Rep. Tom Price, early Friday morning in a 52-47 vote.
A number of Democrats attempted to derail his confirmation, having refused to show up for the committee vote out of protest. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch opted to suspend the rules requiring one Democrat to be present for the committee vote — effectively advancing the nominee last week.
Despite having been put through grueling questioning over his stock trades during confirmation hearings, critics argued they needed additional information on potential conflicts of interest.
Price, a physician turned politician, will be tasked with leading the charge on repealing and replacing Obamacare.
Republicans praised the outcome, saying they’re confident he’ll direct the country in the right direction in terms of fixing the health care system.
“As we have made clear, the time for patient-centered reform is now, and Tom is—without question—the leader at HHS we need to make it happen,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a statement, “We look forward to working with him to expand access to quality, affordable health care.”
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