Becerra will likely face a barrage of questions from members of the Democratic-led committee about how he would help manage the government’s response to the pandemic. If confirmed, he would play a key role as the head of a department overseeing everything from the vaccine rollout to important health guidelines.
Becerra, a former member of Congress, has already played a critical part in national health care issues, having been the chief defender of the Affordable Care Act in court.
With the Trump administration joining a coalition of Republican state attorneys general fighting to invalidate the landmark health reform law, Becerra has led a group of Democratic attorneys general arguing why the law remains valid. At issue is whether Congress’ reducing the penalty for not having health insurance to zero rendered the individual mandate unconstitutional, which would cause the entire law to fall.
If confirmed, Becerra will be the first Latino to lead the department.
CNN’s Jessica Dean, Paul LeBlanc, Jeff Zeleny, Kate Sullivan and Tami Luhby contributed to this report.