GOP delays vote on attorney general nominee

AP News
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Posted: Feb 12, 2015 11:11 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans delayed a committee vote on the president's nominee for attorney general Thursday, saying they had more questions for Loretta Lynch.

Democrats complained Lynch was being held to a double standard compared to other nominees and said her nomination should be voted on immediately.

"Clearly she's been treated differently, and I guess that's what I object to, because there are sensitivities," Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said at a meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

But committee Republicans disputed that and said a delay of a week or so is standard procedure when senators have additional questions for a nominee.

"I don't see any reason for the fuss made here," said Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah. "We've long had the procedural move that anybody can put somebody over to the next markup. There shouldn't even be a fuss made."

Hatch added that he intends to support Lynch and said he hopes the additional time will give other Republican senators, including Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley of Iowa, the opportunity to come around to his position.

Grassley said the committee will vote on Lynch at its next meeting, Feb. 26, after the congressional Presidents Day recess. He said he had found some of Lynch's answers unsatisfactory and wants to hear more from her.

Lynch is the U.S. attorney for the eastern district of New York. She's widely expected to win approval from the committee and the full Senate.

She would replace Eric Holder to become the nation's first black female attorney general.