by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, responding to frustration among GOP senators about Senate delays in confirming President Trump’s nominees, is considering a more aggressive manner of confronting Democrats’ obstruction and delays.
The Kentucky Republican early this week sent a signal to Democrats that he would force all senators to remain in session on Friday and possibly sacrifice their weekend to confirm a slate of Trump’s nominees.
The new push to pick up the pace began Monday night and continued into Tuesday.
“We have a number of nominees to consider in the next several days,” McConnell said Monday night on the Senate floor. “The Senate’s workweek will not end until all of these amply qualified nominees are confirmed.”
On Tuesday, he followed up by pledging to keep the Senate in session “as long as it takes” to clear this current slate of six nominees.
The nominations, he said, have been “vetted” and their expertise is “well-known.”
“Their positions sit empty, waiting to be filled. The American people are waiting for their president to have his full team, and for their federal government to be appropriately staffed.”
The six nominations up for confirmation this week include Trump’s choice for a seat on the National Labor Relations Board and nominees for key posts at the Department of Labor, the Environmental Protection Agency, and two district court judges.
Rank-and-file Republican senators are applauding McConnell’s action, which signals a more confrontational approach with Democrats that they have been urging for months.