Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, announced Wednesday, November 18 that the committee approved two key Obama administration nominees during the morning’s Executive Session. David Michaels of Maryland to be an Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and Pamela S. Hyde of New Mexico to be Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services were approved and now head to the full Senate for confirmation.

“I am pleased that we have moved the nominations of Mr. Michaels and Ms. Hyde forward,” Chairman Harkin said in a prepared statement. “Our nation’s labor and health systems face critical challenges, and public servants of their caliber are assets to the American people. I urge their swift confirmation.”

According to the American Industrial Hygiene Association’s Government Affairs Director Aaron Trippler, no testimony was presented. A simple vote was taken to approve the nomination. Two Republican Senators voted no.

The Senate must now vote to approve the nomination. Trippler said in an email notice that he has no idea when this might occur, but probably within a day or two. “It is a near certainty he will be confirmed,” said Trippler.