Tags: Attorney General | Holder | midterms | wait | replacement

Holder Replacement May Wait Until After Midterms

Image: Holder Replacement May Wait Until After Midterms
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By    |   Friday, 10 Oct 2014 09:46 AM

After initially signaling it would move quickly to appoint a replacement for Attorney General Eric Holder, the White House may opt to wait until after the midterm elections to avoid a political confrontation with Republicans.

According to Politico, the White House is genuinely of two minds about which path to pursue regarding the timing of a nomination.

"Everything I'm hearing is this is going to be a post-election nomination," an ex-official told Politico.

Democratic consultant Joe Trippi told Politico, "The one thing they don't want to do is put someone forward next week and have it become a November issue, a rallying cry for Republicans to stop the next Eric Holder."

There would be some drawbacks for the administration to delaying the decision, namely that it may become more difficult to confirm an appointee during the lame duck session, or worse, there could be an impasse with the GOP if the Democrats have lost control of the Senate.

Ironically, in the immediate aftermath of Holder's resignation announcement in September, Republicans were pushing the White House to delay an appointment for the same reasons, believing it would benefit the party's chances of finding a candidate they were comfortable with. Senior Democratic lawmakers, meanwhile, wanted a swift appointment.

Nevertheless, pushing forward with a nomination before the end of the current congressional session is still a consideration, according to Politico, though time is running out.

A confirmation process usually takes weeks of preparation and deliberation. It would be difficult to achieve by the Nov. 4 deadline. If the president delays action until after the election, it would also be difficult to finalize a confirmation before Christmas.

"If the Republicans have a clear majority, I don't see how it makes sense to wait — even if you can't get it done in the lame duck, it's better to do it in the lame duck," Trippi said.

Earlier this month, Politico reported that the White House had a shortlist of candidates it was prepared to appoint. The top three contenders were reported to be former White House Counsel Kathy Ruemmler, Labor Secretary Tom Perez, and Solicitor General Donald Verrilli.

Perez and Verrilli have been confirmed by the Senate in the past, so they might be the best options if Democrats want an expedited confirmation process, Politico reported.

Regardless, after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid last year changed the procedural rules to prevent Republicans from blocking appointments with filibusters, the GOP may be even more adamant that the process is delayed until the new Congress convenes in January, according to Politico.

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After initially signaling it would move quickly to appoint a replacement for Attorney General Eric Holder, the White House may opt to wait until after the midterm elections to avoid a political confrontation with Republicans.
Attorney General, Holder, midterms, wait, replacement
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2014-46-10
Friday, 10 Oct 2014 09:46 AM
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