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Biden To Tap Boston Mayor Marty Walsh As Labor Secretary

Steven Senne


Updated at 2:56 p.m. ET

President-elect Joe Biden is tapping Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, a Biden ally with deep ties to unions, as his labor secretary, a source familiar with the decision tells NPR's Don Gonyea.

The Democrat Biden campaigned for the White House saying he'd be the "most pro-union president you've ever seen."

In picking Walsh, a white man, the president-elect moves ahead despite some advocates hoping he'd pick a diverse candidate to head the Labor Department.

Politico first reported Biden's pick Thursday.

His former primary rival, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, also expressed interest in the role.

Biden and Walsh have been close for years. Biden presided over Walsh's inauguration in early 2018, after his reelection.

"Mayor Walsh is a close friend and an incredible public servant," Biden said in a 2017 statement released ahead of that inauguration.

Before being elected Boston's mayor in 2013, Walsh, a native of the city with a notable Boston accent, was a state representative and head of the Boston Building Trades Council, a union group.

Massachusetts' two Democratic U.S. senators lauded the pick, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren writing on Twitter that Walsh "is a champion for America's labor unions and a fierce fighter for working families."

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