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Flake threatens to limit Trump court nominees: report

Flake threatens to limit Trump court nominees: report
© Greg Nash

Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeThe unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her  Cindy McCain: Arizona election audit is 'ludicrous' The Republicans' deep dive into nativism MORE (R-Ariz.) is reportedly considering using votes on President TrumpDonald TrumpCaitlyn Jenner on Hannity touts Trump: 'He was a disruptor' Ivanka Trump doubles down on vaccine push with post celebrating second shot Conservative Club for Growth PAC comes out against Stefanik to replace Cheney MORE’s appellate court nominees as a bargaining chip for demands on two separate issues. 

CNN reported that Flake may block votes on the court nominations while he attempts to secure action on tariffs and travel restrictions to Cuba.

“We’re discussing it,” he told the network. 

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Flake is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, where Republicans hold a one-seat advantage over Democrats.

If Flake does not support the appellate nominees, it could compromise their nominations. Most judges are voted out of the committee along party lines. 

However, Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyGrassley asks Blinken to provide potential conflicts involving John Kerry Overnight Defense: Gillibrand makes new push for military sexual assault reform | US troops begin leaving Afghanistan | Biden budget delay pushes back annual defense policy bill Gillibrand makes new push for military sexual assault reform MORE (R-Iowa) told CNN that he will not schedule votes on the judges until Flake has indicated he’ll support the nominees.

Grassley added that the Senate nominations calendar is full, and he does not feel pressured to vote on judges at this time. 

Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Memo: The GOP's war is already over — Trump won Biden: GOP in the midst of a 'mini-revolution' Ernst defends Cheney, calls for GOP unity MORE (R-Ky.) have touted the confirmation of circuit court judges as one of his administration's hallmark achievements. The Republican-held Senate set a record pace for judge confirmations earlier this year.

Flake, who is retiring from the Senate when his term expires in January, has become one of the most vocal GOP critics of Trump in recent months.

He has expressed concerns over Trump's decision to implement steep tariffs on U.S. allies. 

Last year, he slammed Trump's reversal of the Obama administration policy that lifted travel restrictions to Cuba. Flake co-sponsored a bill that would have lifted such restrictions.