Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) is now attorney general after a 52-47 vote. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) was the only Democrat to cross party lines to vote with the Republican majority. Yet, we’re still very far away from having a fully functioning administration since Senate Democrats keep dragging their feet on his nominees.
Senate Democrats must be regretting their effort to nuke the filibuster rules for non-Supreme Court presidential nominees, where a simple majority secures cloture motions and confirmation votes. If a 60-vote procedural hurdle were kept in place, there’s no doubt the Democrats would have dug trenches and fought to the bitter end the nominations of Sessions, Betsy DeVos, President Donald Trump’s education secretary, Tom Price (HHS), Steve Mnuchin (Treasury), and others—and undoubtedly they would have been given a few scalps. So far, the person to withdraw his name from consideration was Vincent Viola, who was selected to be Trump’s Army Secretary, but it was due to difficulty severing the business ties he has accrued over 35 years.
Yet, shouldn’t Democrats show the same deference on cabinet nominees Republicans did during the eight years of Obama’s presidency. Yes, they boycotted Gina McCarthy’s EPA nomination in 2013, but she was confirmed. In fact, for those who did pay their taxes on time, most were confirmed in a timely manner. Why? Well, I’ll let Chuck Schumer explain from his 2013 statement regarding the filibuster changes. Elections have consequences.
Just about everyone in America, Democrat, Republican, liberal, conservative, believe that once you elect a president he deserves his choices to run the executive branch. But a new tactic has it been introduced try to paralyze the executive branch the way they paralyze the legislative branches because they really don’t want the government to function.
Life comes at you fast, Chuck. Yes, the GOP voiced opposition to some nominees. Yes, some were stalled, but not like this. As Jeff Dunetz noted, seven nominees were confirmed on day one of Obama’s presidency, with 12 out of the 15 confirmed by this time.
19 Republicans voted to confirm Eric Holder as AG.— jon gabriel (@exjon) February 9, 2017
1 Democrat voted to confirm Jeff Sessions as AG.
So much for an overly partisan GOP.
Sessions brings to 8 the number of Pres Trump's Cabinet confirmed so far. 11 to go.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) February 9, 2017