The White House is calling out the GOP for taking too long to confirm Loretta Lynch’s attorney general nomination.
It’s been 159 days since Lynch was nominated to take over for outgoing attorney general Eric Holder and she still hasn’t been confirmed.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest was not going to let Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley get away with blaming Democrats for Lynch’s delayed confirmation. Grassley said earlier this week that Dems should have done it while they still had control of the senate.
The Huffington Post reports that that was enough for Earnest to accuse him of being “duplicitous” because that is exactly the opposite of what he said back in September, when he begged Democrats to hold off on rushing a confirmation through.
According to PBS, Grassley said:
“Rather than rush a nominee through the Senate in a lame-duck session, I hope the president will now take his time to nominate a qualified individual who can start fresh relationships with Congress so that we can solve the problems facing our country.”
Grassley’s team is standing by his more recent statement, though. His rep Beth Levine echoed the sentiment that Democrats had a chance to confirm Lynch before Republicans took over the Senate. She said in a statement:
“If nothing else, the White House certainly is good at rewriting history. The fact of the matter is that when Eric Holder announced his intention to step down in September, Senate Democrats had a 55 seat majority. If you believe the White House and Senate Democrats had Republicans’ best interests in mind when they delayed consideration of the Lynch nomination last fall, you hadn’t watched how Harry Reid ran the Senate.”
Instead, Levine argued that Democrats allegedly chose to use their time to push through more federal judges. She went on to claim that this would suggest the confirmation was not a high priority for them, stating, ” It was abundantly clear then – just as it is now – that Senate Democrats’ priorities didn’t include the Lynch nomination.”
After nearly six months, Earnest pointed out that Lynch has had to wait longer–no matter who is to blame for the hold up. Democrats are tired of being stalled on this issue and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said yesterday that he is now ready to try forcing a vote for Lynch’s confirmation.