As the Democrats keep threatening to delay confirmation hearings, Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell said the Dems need to “grow up and get past that.”
During McConnell’s appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” he said, “I know how it feels when you’re coming into a new situation and the other guy’s won the election. What did we do? We confirmed seven Cabinet appointments the day President Obama was sworn in. We didn’t like most of them either. But he won the election. So all of these little procedural complaints are related to their frustrations.”
Then he added, “We need to sort of grow up here and get past that.”
A nonpartisan federal group voiced concerns about the Trump appointees, and Walter Shaub, director of the independent Office of Government Ethics, discussed his concerns in a letter disclosed by senate Democratic leaders on Saturday.
In his letter, Shaub wrote, “Some of Trump’s nominees — particularly those with a complex web of financial interests and little background in public service — are left with ‘potentially unknown or unresolved ethics issues’ before their hearings.”
Also, in response to McConnell’s comments on Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) said, “This is not an issue that pits Republicans against Democrats — it pits Republicans against all Americans and an independent ethics agency that is tasked with ensuring the President’s Cabinet follows the law. Until these nominees have fully cooperated with the ethics review process, the hearings and confirmation schedule should not be rushed.”
There are nine Cabinet confirmation hearings scheduled in the Senate this week.
The extensive background check processes and document reviews for Trump’s Cabinet picks are at varying levels of completion. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), Trump’s nominee for attorney general, has completed both the ethics review and the FBI background check, according to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Sessions will go before the committee Tuesday.
Other nominees with confirmation hearings scheduled for this week include Betsy DeVos for education and John Kelly for Department of Homeland Security, both of which haven’t completed their ethics reviews.
In spite of all the Democratic protesting and complaining, McConnell said he is “optimistic” that the Senate will confirm “up to seven” nominees by Trump’s inauguration on January 20.
McConnell said, “We found most of [Obama’s] Cabinet appointments just as disturbing as they would find President Trump’s, and that’s what happens when you lose the election.”
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