Trump blasts Schumer, Democrats for ‘obstructing’ nominations
President Trump on Monday ripped Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Democrats, arguing they are unfairly blocking his nominees from getting a vote.
“They’re holding up every single nomination. Schumer and the group are holding up every single nomination. They’re obstructing — I’m telling you they’re not good politicians, but they’re very good at obstruction,” Trump told reporters during a press conference with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in the Rose Garden.
The president added that Democrats are being “unfair” to his nominees.
Of 602 “key” Trump nominees tracked by The Washington Post and the Partnership for Public Service, 142 have been confirmed while an additional 165 nominees have been nominated.
Overall, Trump has had 172 nominations confirmed, according to the tracker. By comparison, former President Barack Obama had 353 nominees confirmed by this point in his presidency, former President George W. Bush had 373 and former President Bill Clinton had 329.
Democrats don’t have the ability to block any of Trump’s nominees on their own, but they can use the Senate’s rulebook to drag out debate over a nominee for days.
GOP senators are growingly increasingly frustrated by what they view as stall tactics for uncontroversial nominees, while acknowledging that the administration was initially slow to name picks.
Trump added on Monday that he expects McConnell will “start pushing them very hard. And he can do that, and he wants to do that. He also wants to get the judicial nominations through.”
Trump’s criticism of Democrats, and Schumer by name, comes after he accused the Senate minority leader of hypocrisy over the Iran deal on Twitter earlier Monday.
Schumer opposed the deal but has warned Trump from backing away from the agreement.
Trump has at times signaled that he is willing to work with Schumer, including his surprise agreement to a government funding deal and opening the door to a deal on undocumented immigrants brought into the country as children.
Trump added on Monday that he wants to “have a relationship [with Democrats]. If we don’t, we don’t.”
“I hope to be able to because I like the concept of bipartisan but right now they are doing nothing but obstructing,” he said.
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