McConnell Blocks Request to Debate Nominees Over Berwick Appointment

Posted July 14, 2010 at 6:11pm

Senate Republicans followed through late Wednesday with threats to retaliate for President Barack Obama’s recess appointment last week by objecting to a unanimous consent request made by Democrats to hold a floor debate to consider two judicial nominees.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) objected to the request regarding the nominees to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which was offered by Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.).

He offered a lengthy objection that he said was based on Obama’s use of a recess appointment to install Donald Berwick as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, as well as previous Democratic objections to judicial nominees to the 4th Circuit made by President George W. Bush.

“Democrats didn’t schedule so much as a committee hearing to Donald Berwick,” McConnell said in remarks on the Senate floor.