President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaAs Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Debate gives Democrats a chance to focus on unaddressed issues of concern to black voters Is Joe Biden finished? MORE's need to use recess appointments on 15 of his nominees underscores why the institution and rules of the Senate are in dire need of reform, Sen. Barbara MikulskiBarbara Ann MikulskiLobbying World Only four Dem senators have endorsed 2020 candidates Raskin embraces role as constitutional scholar MORE (D-Md.) said Sunday.


In an interview on CNN's "State of the Union," Mikulski noted that most administrations, including those of former Presidents Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonFeehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds Press: Ukraine's not the only outrage The 2 events that reshaped the Democratic primary race MORE and George Bush, also had to invoke the Constitutional power to free their nominees from Senate obstruction.

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But the Maryland Democrat said it was especially necessary in Obama's case, as the upper has chamber has so far failed to vote on 77 of his nominations, some of which have awaited confirmations for months.

"This is why we we ought to reform the institution," Mikulski said, noting the Senate's system of placing holds, sometimes anonymously or indefinitely, has started to "hold up function of government."

"If we actually all work together.. we can bring the institution ahead," noting reform would return the sense of "decorum" that Milkulski said was now absent from the Senate.