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Obama: Nominee Holds for Me, Not for Thee

9:27 AM, Feb 4, 2010 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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Yesterday, at his talk with Senate Democrats, Obama went after Republicans for putting holds on his nominees— a procedural right afforded all senators.

"I don't have a GSA administrator, even though I nominated somebody who was well qualified several months ago, and nobody can tell me that there's anything particularly wrong with her," Obama said. "They're blocking her because of some unrelated matter."

The Washington Post notes today that Obama himself joined in holds on three Bush administration nominees:

In 2005, a year after his election to the Senate, Obama placed a hold on Susan Bodine to lead the Environmental Protection Agency office that oversees Superfund and emergency cleanup programs because the agency had missed a deadline on new regulations for lead paint exposure.

In September 2006, Obama and Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) blocked Robert L. Wilkie's nomination as a Defense Department assistant secretary over a long-delayed Pentagon report on Midwestern wind farms.

And Obama joined with other Democrats in October 2007 to block the nomination of Hans von Spakovsky to the Federal Election Commission. Von Spakovsky later withdrew; Wilkie and Bodine were eventually confirmed.

But a White House spokesperson said holds are way worse when Republicans do them, so there.

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