Left to right: Janet Yellen, Alejandro Mayorkas, Avril Haines, Lloyd Austin, and Antony Blinken
CNN  — 

Five of President-elect Joe Biden’s national security Cabinet nominees will face Senate panels on Tuesday in the first step of the confirmation process.

The day before Biden takes office, his nominees for secretary of state, secretary of the treasury, director of national intelligence, defense secretary and secretary of Homeland Security will appear before Senate committees to be considered for their respective roles.

Biden is set to take office on Wednesday without key members of his Cabinet in place, as the Republican-controlled Senate has moved more slowly to schedule confirmation hearings for his nominees than it has for previous presidents. But the timeline for confirming Biden’s nominees could accelerate in the coming days, when Democrats take control of the Senate.

Biden’s Cabinet confirmation hearings could run up against the Senate’s impeachment trial of outgoing President Donald Trump – timing for which has not yet been scheduled – and as Biden attempts to push through Congress his $1.9 trillion coronavirus vaccine and economic stimulus proposal

Tuesday’s schedule:

  • 10 a.m. ET: Janet Yellen will appear before the Senate Finance Committee to be considered for treasury secretary.
  • 10 a.m. ET: Avril Haines will appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee to be considered for director of national intelligence.
  • 10 a.m. ET: Alejandro Mayorkas will appear before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee to be considered for secretary of Homeland Security. 
  • 2 p.m. ET: Antony Blinken will appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to be considered for secretary of state.
  • 3 p.m. ET: Retired Gen. Lloyd Austin appear before the Senate Armed Services Committee to be considered for secretary of defense. 

Where can I watch the confirmation hearings?

Tune in to CNN or CNN International to watch live coverage of the hearings or watch on mobile devices via CNN’s apps for iOS and Android, and via CNNgo apps for Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire, Chromecast, Android TV and SamsungTV. You can also follow CNN’s live coverage on CNN.com.

You can watch the hearings on the Senate committees’ websites too:

Who are the nominees?

Janet Yellen

Yellen was the first woman to chair the Federal Reserve, serving from 2014 to 2018. She would make history as the first woman to be treasury secretary if confirmed by the Senate. Yellen previously served for four years as the vice chair of the board, and president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco for four years prior to that. She was also chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers from 1997 to 1999.

Avril Haines

Haines served as assistant to the president and principal deputy national security adviser to President Barack Obama. She chaired the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, which is responsible for formulating the administration’s national security and foreign policy. She would become the first woman to be director of national intelligence if confirmed by the Senate.

Haines previously served as the deputy director of the CIA. She was also legal adviser to the National Security Council. She served as deputy chief counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee while Biden was chairman.

Alejandro Mayorkas

Mayorkas was deputy secretary of Homeland Security during the Obama administration and served as the director of the Department of Homeland Security’s US Citizenship and Immigration Services. He would be the first Latino and immigrant to be secretary of Homeland Security if confirmed by the Senate.

While at US Citizenship and Immigration Services, Mayorkas oversaw the implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which was an executive action under Obama that protected young undocumented immigrants who had come to the US as children from deportation. Trump moved to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in 2017 but was ultimately blocked by the Supreme Court from doing so.

Antony Blinken

Blinken served in the Obama administration as the deputy secretary of state, assistant to the president and principal deputy national security adviser. He was the national security adviser to then-Vice President Biden and deputy assistant to the president during Obama’s first term. He has been a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and was the Democratic staff director at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

During the Bill Clinton administration, Blinken served as a member of the National Security Council staff at the White House and held roles as the special assistant to the president, senior director for European affairs and senior director for speechwriting and then strategic planning. He was Clinton’s chief foreign policy speechwriter.

Lloyd Austin

Austin, a retired Army general, is a former commander of the US Central Command. He would make history as the first Black person to lead the Pentagon if confirmed by the Senate. Austin would need a congressional waiver to be confirmed for this civilian post because federal law requires seven years of retirement from active duty before taking on the role, and he retired from active-duty service only four years ago. He has worked closely with Biden in the past.

While Biden was vice president, Austin served as the vice chief of staff of the Army and commanding general of US forces in Iraq, and later the commander of CENTCOM. Biden and Austin had discussions on a range of issues, including those in the Middle East and Central and South Asia.

When will these nominees get confirmation votes?

Aides have told CNN it is possible the Senate moves as soon as Wednesday, hours after Biden is sworn in, to confirm some of these nominees to their posts.

Democrats will take control of the Senate in the coming days after winning two Senate runoff elections earlier this month in Georgia. A Democratic-led Senate will be able to confirm Cabinet nominations without Republican support.

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will be able to act as a tie-breaking vote in a chamber made up of 50 Republican and 50 Democratic senators, effectively giving Democrats control. 

What else is on Congress’ agenda?

Biden wants swift confirmation of all of his Cabinet nominees, particularly his national security ones, but the Senate may soon be preoccupied with an impeachment trial and working on a coronavirus relief package.

The House of Representatives voted last week to impeach Trump for the second time.

Talks are ongoing between incoming Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and the offices of current Majority Leader Mitch McConnell about what makes the most sense for the timing of the trial.

Biden has said he wants to split the day in half to allow his nominees to be confirmed in the morning ahead of the Senate trial, but that takes agreement from everyone.

The President-elect has also outlined for Congress to consider a $1.9 trillion legislative package to fund his nationwide vaccination effort and provide direct economic relief to Americans who are struggling amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The American Rescue Plan calls for investing $20 billion in a national vaccination program, including launching community vaccination centers around the country and mobile units in difficult-to-reach areas. It would also increase federal support to vaccinate Medicaid enrollees.

The proposal includes $1,400 stimulus checks, more aid for the unemployed, those facing food shortages and those facing eviction. It includes more money for child care and child tax credits, additional support for small businesses, state and local governments, and increased funding for vaccinations and testing.

CNN’s Lauren Fox contributed to this report.