President Obama has been in office for a little over 16 months; and as of last week, there are about 240 administration nominees waiting for a vote in the senate.
Last Thursday Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) tried to move a bloc of these appointees--all of whom had been vetted and given approval by the relevant committee.
Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refused.
More than sixteen months into office, and the Republicans continue to obstruct this president, while at the same time they expect him and his administration to solve the Job-like crises and disasters hitting this country since before Mr. Obama took office.
From Washington Monthly:
"McConnell didn't have a good reason, except to say his feelings were hurt when the White House gave a recess appointment to Craig Becker to serve on the National Labor Relations Board earlier this year. Last week was McConnell's way of saying he holds a grudge -- and doesn't much care if the federal government has the personnel in place to function as it's supposed to.
With that in mind, don't be too surprised if President Obama, left with little choice, makes some recess appointments during Congress' Memorial Day recess.
"The president is naturally frustrated at another work period ending with a record-breaking number of nominations bottled on the floor, and he will consider next steps over the course of the coming days," a White House aide said. [...]
Congressional aides have suggested Obama may use this week to circumvent the Senate confirmation process and clear at least some of the more than 100 names lingering on the executive calendar. Obama has used his recess appointment powers just once, clearing 15 names in March.
It's not just scandalous Republican obstructionism that's the problem here, though that's clearly part of it. There's also the matter of limited Senate floor time left this year, and the fact that, with GOP filibusters on practically everything and everyone, it takes 30 hours for the chamber to vote on one nominee, even if he or she will end up being confirmed easily.
The government has important government offices that need qualified officials. The country need not suffer because Republicans have broken the Senate."
Americans need to remember this as they demand that President Obama solve one crisis after another without the help or support of the opposing party or the ability to put in place people who have the ability to do the job of moving this country forward and solve its very challenging problems.
The GOP is not just the party of NO!, it's the party of OBSTRUCTION!, and SCREW THE AMERICAN PEOPLE!
And we the people are the ones who pay the price for their destructively childish antics.
James Fallows of the Atlantic has more on this story.