As the head of executive branch of the government, the president has the ability and duty to make a variety of special appointments. While the president is free to nominate whomever he deems qualified, the systems of checks and balances prevents chaos due to inappropriate nominations.
While President Trump has selected his nominees, the Senate must offer their “advice and consent” and vote for each nominee. It is this process that is a current source of contention in Washington D.C.
Unfortunately, Democratic lawmakers have offered little counsel in this regard aside from saying “no” over and over again.
On July 10, Marc Short, the legislative affairs director spoke at a press briefing and commented that the actions of the Senate Democrats created “needless obstruction”.
The Senate Democrats are taking their time in conducting the approval of the appointments – something that they did not do during the last presidency. Even though nominations continue to be sent to the Senate, the nominations are sitting idly with neither an affirmative or negative vote.
Prior Presidential Comparisons
While the Senate has the duty to confirm or deny the nominations after they pass through committee, the current Senate Democrats are not confirming President Trump’s nominations with the same speed and efficiency as they have in the past.
Within the first 45 seconds of the press briefing, Short stated:
“This week the Senate has the scheduled a few confirmation votes, yet even as the Washington Post reported, the Senate is conducting the slowest confirmation process in American history.”
In fact, the White House released the facts and figures to prove just how slow this obstruction really is. Comparing confirmed nominations by the time of the August recess:
• Former President Obama made 454 nominations, and the Senate confirmed a whopping 69% of them before the August recess.
• President Trump has made 216 nominations, and less than 25% have been confirmed.
Why Obstruction is Bad for the Country
Of course, the Democrats hold different values and beliefs than the Republicans, and each party rightly promotes laws and ideas that support those values. However, no one party should ever act in a way that risks harming the whole of the country, and that is just what all of this stalling is doing.
According to the briefing, Senate Democrats have delayed confirming several important appointments including those for national security positions. For instance, Elaine McCusker, President Trump’s nominee for the Under Secretary of Defense, held on to bipartisan support – until it came time for the Senate vote. As of 7/10, she was still waiting for her confirmation vote and has been waiting since the 24th of May.
National security appointees are even more critical to our success and safety in light of the wars brewing in the Middle East. Delaying the appointment of an individual without just cause is nothing but a meddlesome attempt to further the leftist agenda.
Positions in the energy, financial, and regulatory sectors are also still vacant. The Senate is still sitting on the nominations for the director of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services, deputy secretary of the Health and Human Services, solicitor general, as well as the assistant attorney general.
At the time of this writing, 133 nominees are still waiting for consideration by the committees.
Apart from the security issues of leaving critical roles unfilled, the obstructive delay affects the productivity of all Senate members, forcing them to spend time on the nominations rather than other productive work.
Why are Senate Democrats Sitting on Nominees?
The reason checks and balances were incorporated into the federal government in the first place was to ensure that no one branch of the government was able to grow too powerful. That being said, the time-consuming delay in confirming President Trump’s nominees is not born out of concern of the qualifications of each nominee.
Rather, the stalling is done only to give resistance to the whole Trump administration, not the qualification of these candidates. Short argued that jeopardizing national security to play to the “radical left-wing base” is outrageous.
The Democrats obstruct not only President Trump’s decisions, but the will of the American people. The Senate Democrats cannot put their own political gain above what is good for the country.
The press brief ends with Short pleading for the media and the American people to call out the obstinacy of the Democrats, and encourage them to act swiftly to support the president and fill the necessary roles within our government.
~ Liberty Planet