Senator vows to block Obama's Army nominee through 2016

Senator vows to block Obama's Army nominee through 2016
© Getty Images

Sen. Pat RobertsPat RobertsMeet Jay Sekulow, the new face of Trump’s legal team Overnight Healthcare: Senate GOP eyes July vote on health bill Senate GOP eyes July vote on healthcare MORE (R-Kan.) is vowing to keep a hold on President Obama’s nominee for secretary of the Army until the president leaves office and is no longer in a position to close the Guantanamo Bay prison.

“The hold will stay until we can get past this year,” Roberts told his home=state newspaper, The Topeka Capital-Journal.

The nominee, Eric Fanning, had a confirmation hearing Thursday before the Senate Armed Services Committee, where he talked about his concern for cuts to the force.

But Roberts placed a hold on his confirmation in protest of Obama’s push to close the military prison in Cuba. One of the potential sites to relocate detainees to is Fort Leavenworth in Kansas.

In 2009, Roberts placed a hold on then-nominee John McHugh, who retired as Army secretary in October, for the same reason.

If confirmed, Fanning would be the first openly gay service secretary.

Roberts said his hold is not because of any personal issues with Fanning.

“I want to stress that it’s nothing personal,” Roberts told the Topeka newspaper. “It’s just the way it is.”