(CNN) - Vice President Joe Biden swore in California Rep. Hilda Solis as the next Secretary of Labor Friday Morning, one of three cabinet posts that had yet to be formally filled.
"When she held hearings on sweatshops she was heard," Biden sad of Solis Friday. "When she fought to protect low income and minority communities from landfill and pollution and environmental hazards – she was heard. And in Congress, when she stood up, she stood up to level the playing field for workers to organize – she was heard."
The Senate confirmed Solis, 51, for the post last month.
Even with Solis' swearing in, the Obama administration still has two open cabinet posts, Secretary of Commerce and Health and Human Services. That's more cabinet vacancies than any of his recent predecessors at this point into a new presidential term.
Although Obama has named nominees for the top posts at the Departments of Commerce and Health and Human Services, they have yet to be confirmed by the Senate. President Clinton had two lingering cabinet vacancies almost two months into his second term, but the Senate confirmed his pick for Energy Secretary on March 12. Clinton’s other vacancy was for the Labor Secretary post, which the Senate filled on April 30.
In 1989, President George H.W. Bush had four cabinet vacancies heading into March of his first year in office, but the Senate confirmed his picks for Energy and HHS on March 1 and his Veterans Affairs secretary nominee on March 2. The fourth vacancy, which was for Secretary of Defense, was filled by the Senate on March 17.
The length of time Obama is taking to complete his Cabinet has surprised a number of political observers. The president announced his Cabinet picks at a rapid clip after last November's election, but quickly became entangled in various nominees' tax and ethics problems.
New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson bowed out of the running for commerce secretary on January 5, citing the distraction of a federal investigation into ties to a company that has done business with his state.
Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire - Obama's second Commerce pick, cited "irresolvable conflicts" with the administration over the economic stimulus bill when he withdrew his name from consideration on February 12.
Former Washington state Gov. Gary Locke is the president's third choice to head the Commerce Department.
Obama joked during his announcement of Locke that he is "a big believer in keeping at something until you get it right."
Former Sen. Tom Daschle of South Dakota - who was selected to be secretary of health and human services - withdrew on February 3 after controversy erupted over his tax records and questions over his work in a field that some consider lobbying.
Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius is Obama's new pick for secretary of Health and Human Services.
Former Rep. Hilda Solis was sworn in as the administration's labor secretary Friday. The Senate voted 80-17 to confirm the four-term California congresswoman after consideration of her nomination had been briefly delayed by a review of a possible tax controversy surrounding her husband.