Biden Admin Still Half Empty A Year In:

Written By BlabberBuzz | Saturday, 25 December 2021 10:50
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President Joe Biden is being overpowered by his predecessors when it comes to the Senate approving his nominees. Republicans protest his handling of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project and the Afghanistan troop departure.

Biden sending about 640 nominations to the Senate by his first December in the office is on par with prior Presidents, aside from former President Donald Trump, who had named 100 fewer appointees by this point in his term, according to Max Stier, the CEO of the Partnership for Public Service Partnership, which houses the Center for Presidential Transition.

Yet Biden's about 355 Senate confirmations put him behind former Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush. Bush, for example, had upward of 100 more designees passed by now. And Biden has to select about 160 people to the 800 posts the Center for Presidential Transition tracks of the 1,200 total roles the Senate governs.

For Stier, the Senate is the "biggest part of the problem," though it does not bear sole responsibility for Biden's confirmation delays. The system has "really never worked well," and "it's working even less well today than ever before," Stier said of the number of appointees needed to be nominated.

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"There isn't anything like this in any other democracy in the world. And it is just institutionally really impossible for a president to get their team in place in real time," he told the Washington Examiner. "It's getting worse because the world is moving faster and getting more scary. And the requirements that are in the Senate are getting harder and harder."

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"Partisanship has worsened the backlog since the Senate is its most expeditious when lawmakers can unanimously agree," Stier said.

"It's not just partisanship. It's actually a single senator [who] can throw sand in the gears of consequence," he said. "One thing that is coming up very soon is the end of this session. And unless there's unanimous consent, the current nominations will be sent back to the president, and there'll be a requirement that they be renominated."

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Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri are among those who submitted "holds" on Biden State Department, Pentagon, and Treasury nominees under their individual committees' jurisdictions before full floor votes. Cruz offered Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer his praises in exchange for the chamber regarding additional sanctions over the Germany-Russia Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Hawley issued a statement to highlight Biden's deadly departure of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.

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