Members of the Biden Administration are loudly accusing the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Department of Defense of intentionally hindering the presidential transition.
“Make no mistake, this lack of cooperation has real world consequences, most concerningly as it relates to national security,” warns Yohannes Abraham, head of the Biden-Harris transition. “This intentionally generated paucity makes it harder for our government to protect the American people moving forward.”
It could be that members of the Trump Administration are holding onto the hope that Vice President Mike Pence will somehow reverse the outcome of the presidential election on January 6th when he presides over the Electoral College vote-count.
Or it could be that Biden officials are simply asking too much before Inauguration Day.
“OMB has provided all factual information about ongoing programs to his team – everything they have requested – and we have taken 45 meetings with his staff. Further, he has been briefed on Operation Warp Speed,” said a spokesman.
“OMB is doing everything it can to further President Trump’s policy agenda of protecting our border, rebuilding the military, and putting America first…Further, it’s pretty beyond the pale to impugn the character of the hardworking men and women of OMB simply because he [Biden] is unable, or unwilling, to gather the facts.”
OMB Director Russ Vought flat out accused the Biden Administration of making false statements about the agency’s behavior during the transition, adding that ‘redirecting staff and resources towards the Biden team’s budget proposals before the end of Trump’s term is not an OMB transition responsibility.’
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Speaking Tuesday to NPR, incoming national security adviser Jake Sullivan said the Pentagon had ignored “dozens” of requests for information and complained about the department’s “obstruction and roadblocks.”
In response, the Pentagon said it had handed over 5,000 pages of classified information, responded to nearly 200 requests for information, and conducted 164 interviews even though it is busy facilitating vaccine distribution.
Tensions at the White House could delay the incoming administration’s readiness to do its job, but only if Congress ratifies Biden’s win on January 6th.
Critics say Biden’s team is drawing public attention to these complaints in an effort to force Pentagon officials to cooperate. Others say Biden’s team is simply setting the stage so they can blame future blunders on the Trump Administration.