Prior to the Memorial Day recess, Majority Leader Reid proposed to confirm a limited number of nominations pending before the Senate, including the nomination of Steve Preston to be the next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Unfortunately, due to internal Senate disagreement on unrelated nominations, Majority Leader Reid never brought the extremely limited nominations proposal to the floor for a vote.
Today, as the Senate comes back into session, Chief of Staff Josh Bolten sent a letter to Majority Leader Reid to encourage the Senate to immediately confirm Mr. Preston’s nomination. Mr. Bolten also expressed his hope that we can now move forward with a renewed commitment to clearing all of the 366 pending nominations.
150 pending nominations are military or career promotions (Foreign Service, Public Health Service, or NOAA), which are non-partisan in nature.
The remaining 216 are non-career nominations, almost half of which have been pending for more than four months. The vast majority of these lack any significant substantive controversy and they all affect our Nation’s security and prosperity.
As Mr. Bolten says in his letter ‘It should not be regarded as an act of largesse or an opportunity for political advantage for the Senate to promptly take up the hundreds of pending nominations and, at a minimum, give them an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor.
The Bolten letter is here.