The database, which now has between 500 and 600 names, covers everything from cabinet positions to under-secretary positions in more obscure directorates and offices, like the president of the Export-Import Bank and the director of the Bureau of patents and trademarks. The group hope to hand the list over to Biden’s transition team by the end of the week.
Progressives recognize that their job on appointments and politics can be much more difficult if there is a Republican Senate, as it increasingly seems likely. He may not confirm appointments to key government positions that Republicans see as too left-wing, a course of action that Sen. Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and majority leader, has previously suggested pursuing.
And without enough Democratic allies in the Senate, there’s almost no chance the chamber will even pass the agenda backed by Mr. Biden as the election approaches, like lowering the age of Medicare eligibility at age 60 versus age 65.
“If Mitch McConnell were to ultimately control the Senate, it would drastically lower the ceiling of what is possible legislatively and increase the urgency of appointing the right people to the executive to make things happen there,” said Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a sister organization of the Progressive Change Institute and an ally of Ms. Warren.
Progressives haven’t given up hope of passing legislation either, although a Republican Senate makes it much more difficult. They are optimistic that there is broadly acceptable legislation that the Senate could still pass, including a coronavirus relief bill, a federal minimum wage of $ 15 and investments in infrastructure.
“I believe if Joe Biden is in the White House, it changes the dynamic where people know there will be a president who will sign these things into law,” Ms. Jayapal said. “And that will help us a lot.”
“That’s the question: are Republicans going to continue to be the catalyst for a scandalous Trump agenda even when he’s not in the White House?” she added. “Or are they actually going to start speaking for their constituents?”