Xavier Becerra, nominated to guide the Department of Health and Human Services, will testify Tuesday morning on the first of two Senate affirmation hearings, telling a committee that he’s aligned with Biden’s central priorities — defeating the coronavirus pandemic and making certain Americans have entry to inexpensive well being care — though some Republicans argue that he’s unqualified for the job.In ready remarks for his testimony earlier than the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Becerra says, “The mission of HHS — to boost the well being and properly being of all Americans — is core to who I’m.”Fourteen conservative Senate Republicans despatched a letter Monday to Biden expressing “our grave issues” in regards to the nomination and calling Becerra “unfit for any place of public belief, and particularly for HHS secretary.” GOP senators additionally plan to assail his document of supporting reproductive rights. Several conservative teams are mounting an advert marketing campaign towards his nomination.The Health Committee listening to and the second Wednesday, earlier than the Senate Finance Committee will determine whether or not Becerra’s nomination will advance to the complete Senate. They are more likely to be contentious, however until any Democrats defect — none have indicated that they may — he could have sufficient assist for affirmation by the Senate, with its razor-thin Democratic majority.Becerra, California’s legal professional normal, was a House member for twenty years and, if confirmed, can be the primary Latino to function HHS secretary.He led a coalition of Democratic attorneys normal in battling a lawsuit, now earlier than the Supreme Court, that may invalidate the Affordable Care Act. And he filed greater than 100 lawsuits towards Trump administration insurance policies on well being care, in addition to on immigration and the surroundings.Health Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) plans to focus in pleasant questioning on a Biden theme of basing the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic on scientific proof, not politics. She additionally plans to emphasize racial and ethnic inequities highlighted by the pandemic and the importance of kid care in enhancing the nation’s broken financial system.A sprawling $1.4 trillion company, HHS is on the coronary heart of a lot of the federal government’s response to the pandemic. Among its elements are the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.