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Democrats Frustrated With Cabinet Confirmation Hearings

Democrats Frustrated With Cabinet Confirmation Hearings

Cry me a river.

The Senate Republicans have ticked off the Senate Democrats because they scheduled six Cabinet confirmation hearings next Wednesday.

Oh, and President-elect Donald Trump will also hold his first press conference next Wednesday. Plus, the confirmation schedule includes the nominees the Democrats planned to target the most: attorney general, secretary of state, CIA director, education secretary, and transportation secretary.

The Democrats wanted to drag out the process, make it as hard as possible to confirm Trump’s Cabinet. On January 1, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told The Washington Post that his party would “resist” any attempts by the Republicans to rush through the process.

Well, it looks like his request fell on deaf ears. Or it could be because the Democrats failed in the election and the GOP kept the majority.

The minority party fears that the hearings will receive little media attention because of Trump’s press conference, and the fact that it takes place the day after President Barack Obama’s farewell speech:

“That is mostly unprecedented in the modern era of Cabinet considerations, happening only once in history,” Schumer said of the six hearings in one day. “That’s not the standard.”

Schumer said “mostly unprecedented” because six confirmation hearings for President George W. Bush’s nominees were held two days before his 2001 inauguration.

“They’re jamming them together so that they receive less scrutiny and attention individually,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal. “I regret that there are so many hearings bunched together.”

Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said the Democrats are “just, frankly, whining.” He encouraged the Democrats to work with the GOP to vet and confirm the nominations.

Democrats forget that Republicans also have a busy schedule on Wednesday, all who have brushed aside any possible conflicts. Sen Rand Paul (R-KY) shrugged off the busy schedule as he “has two confirmation hearings that morning and one in the afternoon.” Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) has the same schedule as Paul and called the Democrats’ complaints “unfounded.”

Here is the schedule for Wednesday:

The schedule Wednesday is jam-packed: The Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing on secretary of state nominee Rex Tillerson at 9 a.m.; the Intelligence Committee will consider Rep. Mike Pompeo, tapped to lead the CIA, at 10 a.m.; the Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee will consider Education Secretary-designate Betsy DeVos at 10 a.m.; the Commerce Committee will hold a hearing for transportation nominee Elaine Chao (the wife of McConnell) at 10:15 a.m.; and the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee will consider DHS nominee Gen. John Kelly at 2 p.m.

In addition, the Judiciary Committee will hold the second day of its hearing examining Sen. Jeff Sessions nomination as attorney general at 9:30 a.m., though it will only feature outside witnesses, as Sessions is set to testify the previous day.

Some Republicans acknowledged the hectic schedule, but want to do what they can to help the Trump administration have a smooth start:

“It’s hard because we’re trying to get a lot of stuff done and make sure the president-elect has a team ready as soon as possible, and there’s only so many days to do that,” said Sen. John Thune, a member of GOP leadership and the chairman of the Commerce Committee. He dismissed the idea that it was an intentional effort by Republicans to limit scrutiny of the nominees.

“I think people who are interested in a particular nominee or a particular subject area will home in on that, focus on that,” he said. “I know a lot of the nominees that are scheduled for hearings next week are people that members on both sides want to question and we’ll do everything to make that possible.”

But someone needs to hand the Democrats a mirror because seven of Obama’s nominees, not all Cabinet positions, received a hearing on a single day before his 2009 inauguration.

Say that to the Democrats and they claim “that Trump’s nominees are uniquely unqualified and have far more complex financial issues than Obama’s nominees.”

The Democrats have complained that former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, Trump’s pick for Secretary of State, has not turned in his tax returns and his close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

They also have a problem with Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) for attorney general, Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC) for Office of Management and Budget, Betsy DeVos for education, Rep. Tom Price (R-OK) for Department of Health and Human Services, and Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the EPA.


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Awww, Poor Chuckie. Someone give him some Play Doh, a binkie, and a safe space. This business with liberals whining about EVERYTHING is getting really old.

    Insufficiently Sensitive in reply to phdwyphe. | January 6, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Schumer said of the six hearings in one day. “That’s not the standard.”

    Sen. Schumer doesn’t give a rip about ‘the standard’ when it comes to Supreme Court appointments at the end of a President’s term. That standard has always been to allow the incoming President to do the appointing – until Schumer stuck in his oar in hopes of reversing that standard.

    For Schumer, ‘the standard’ is whatever sticks a thumb in the Republican eye. Sorry, but elections have consequences.

      There’s a perfectly good tactical reason for having six hearings in one day. Since Obama had *seven* hearings in one day, any reporter who shoves a microphone under the nose of a Rep. Senator and whines about the short time frame should have this fact slapped right back in their face (and in one sentence so the sound bite doesn’t get chopped so bad.)

      “I don’t see why the Democrats are complaining that we have six nominees in one day because President Obama had seven, and the Republicans went along for his.”

      Many of us certainly hope this election have consequences as momentous as the 2008 and 2012 elections.

    4fun in reply to phdwyphe. | January 6, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    Go Chuck yourself Schumer.

Ahhhhh the Democrats, the party of NO!

Watching these Dems try to be “Important” on Wednesday is going to be like a BLM protest at Macy’s opening on Black Friday! In just a few moments everyone will be gone and the confirmations will be over and the Dems with Chuck U Schumer will be standing all alone on the sidewalk.

They are frustrated because they are in the minority but they want to be in control.

    smalltownoklahoman in reply to userpen. | January 6, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Not only that but with a lot of Trumps nominations like Pruitt at EPA a lot of what they’ve done over the years could be ripped apart and done away with and that has them scared spitless. Should a lot of these regs be repealed and the public sees that they didn’t do much good or did more harm than good then it’s going to be real hard for dems to reimpose these regs or similar ones should they regain power.

      The EPA has be in cahoots with Enviro/Greenies – the activists file lawsuits and EPA settles, agreeing with them and pays them big settlements – this looting of taxpayers and funding of extremists will STOP under Pruitt!!! Go Trump!!!

Not only are they bummed about being shut out and out of power, but all their old tactics like using the media to crank up storms of non-troveries are going nowhere.

No one is paying attention who voted Trump. We don’t care. We know all the tricks. Concern trolling, censored stories, distractions, burying the lede, false cries of “unprecedented”, etc etc etc.

My concern isn’t Democrats. Its weak-kneed Republicans. And I think that’s the only target the media can hit … flipping a McCain-type congress critter vote here or there.

    userpen in reply to PrincetonAl. | January 6, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    Very well said!

    “My concern isn’t Democrats. Its weak-kneed Republicans…”

    Did you say that right. But you should have added “fake.”

    McCain, Graham, McConnell and Ryan are ‘republicans’ as much as Michael Bloomberg was a ‘republican’ – they are corrupt, useful idiots to the left, enamored with their ‘power’ of as rogues.

    Remember who picked Ryan: that drunk piece of garbage, boehner.

They have good reason to howl — ever since 1995 they learned if they go on TV and accuse the Republicans of being heartless, racist, whatever, the Republicans will capitulate and let the Democrats control the agenda despite being the minority party. I sincerely hope the GOP has learned their lesson, understand the Democrats don’t matter — your press coverage doesn’t matter, and go full steam ahead.

Henry Hawkins | January 6, 2017 at 12:45 pm

Never to defend Schumer, but what else can he say?

What a smarmy piece of dung Schumer is.

How this guy banboozled Rubio does not – to say the least – speak well of Rubio.

    People out there all over America are saying …

    “Mr Schumer, how can we trust a guy who doesn’t own his own jet or helicopter .. or at least a pickup truck.”

What a grand plan. Over whelm the *ss holes. With this much
going on it’s going to be really hard for the democrats and their fawning media to whine about the nominees for trump’s cabinet.

The “Head Clown” as Trump would say is way out of his league.

Henry Hawkins | January 6, 2017 at 2:15 pm

It’s time-honored, called the ‘legislative blitz’, where you push so much all at once, all oppositon efforts against you are necessarily divided and diluted, including media and citizen attention spans.

    Tom Servo in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 7, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    Trump’s tweets have the exact same effect, which is why I don’t believe for a minute that they’re accidental or based only on impulse. The trick is to make them look like they are, and the MSM can’t resist the shiny sparkly bait.

Well, say what you will but I believe the two things that make these people uniquely unqualified are these. 1) Non of them have made any commitment to further the Democratic agenda. 2) Most or all of them are very well trained in dealing with insubordination of those under their administration.

Crazy that they whine about putting in a full days work after the voters gave them a slap down this election. This is the stuff that the average American hates about Congress, few work days, plenty of vacations, deciding on their raises, the platinum healthcare, raising money for re-election daily. I’d just as soon toss all the bums out and put in all fresh faces.

Henry Hawkins | January 6, 2017 at 8:02 pm

BTW, a man just called me and said Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid are going to leave their wives and get engaged. I have no idea if it’s true, but people are asking questions…..