President Barack Obama announced Thursday that he plans to make recess appointments for four of his nominees who have waited an average of 303 days for Senate confirmation.At a time when our nation faces so many pressing challenges, I urge members of the Senate to stop playing politics with our highly qualified nominees, and fulfill their responsibilities of advice and consent. Until they do, I reserve the right to act within my authority to do what is best for the American people, Obama said in a statement.The president will appoint Maria del Carmen Aponte to chief of mission for the Republic of El Salvador; Elisabeth Hagen to undersecretary for food safety at the Department of Agriculture; Winslow Sargeant to chief counsel of advocacy for the Small Business Administration; and Richard Sorian to assistant secretary for public affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services.None of the four nominees is considered controversial.
On January 3, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., raises her right hand as her son Henry messes up her hair while Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., delivers the ceremonial swearing-in in the Old Senate Chamber. Gillibrand's other son Theodore, lower right, looks on.
Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.