March 31, 2015 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Senate GOP Upset by Harry Reid’s Nominations Tactic

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wants to prioritize the confirmation of 17 judicial nominees, but Republicans have balked.

According to White House Counsel Kathy Ruemmler, who spoke with reporters on a conference call, on average Obamas judicial nominees have waited four to five times as long as President George W. Bushs nominees to be confirmed after receiving Judiciary Committee approval.

Republicans have used every delay tactic available to them to slow the confirmation process down to nearly a halt and to block nominees who are unquestionably qualified, she said.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the issue should not have to take much of the Senates time. They could approve these judges in five minutes, the Nevada Democrat said.

Reid added that the Senate continues to work on job creation and underscored that the transportation bill the Senate was poised to pass would create more jobs than the House small-business measure.

The House measure is a nice bill; I like it, Reid said. But its not a major job creation bill, as Sen. McConnell said this morning. Itll help people, we hope, take some of that money they have in the banks and invest it. Thats what we want done. And weve said were going to move to that.

Democrats have offered, on the Senate floor today, to take up the House jobs bill after taking a pounding from Republicans to do so, according to a senior Democratic aide. The offer also includes an agreement to hold a vote on an amendment to the bill that would boost the lending limit for the Export-Import Bank and to move to the judicial nominee issue afterward.

But Republicans have not accepted the offer because they argue that voting on 17 judges is not the best use of time.

Its a question of priorities, a senior GOP aide said, adding that Americans want Congress to focus on job creation.

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