McConnell urges Biden to withdraw embattled ATF nominee

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden stiff arms progressives on the Postal Service Biden clarifies any Russian movement into Ukraine 'is an invasion' The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden talks, Senate balks MORE (R-Ky.) on Saturday urged the White House to withdraw President BidenJoe BidenPredictions of disaster for Democrats aren't guarantees of midterm failure A review of President Biden's first year on border policy  Vilsack accuses China of breaking commitments in Trump-era trade deal MORE's pick of David Chipman to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), a nomination that has been stuck in limbo for weeks.

"The Senate has spent quite enough time flirting with this profoundly misguided nomination. The American people deserve a trustworthy steward leading the ATF. ... It is time the Biden administration revisit this decision and send us somebody who fits that description," McConnell said. 

The GOP leader's push comes as Republicans have been deeply critical of Chipman over his ties to the gun control advocacy group Giffords and say that he is too extreme to run a federal agency tasked with enforcing certain gun laws.

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McConnell, in a floor speech late last month, urged opposition to Chipman's nomination, saying, "There is no way this nominee is the best the Biden administration can do."

Democrats could confirm Chipman on their own if all members of their caucus backed his nomination. But so far, several moderates haven't said if they will support Chipman, including Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinBriahna Joy Gray: Last-minute push for voting legislation felt 'perfomative' Manchin: Biden spending plan talks would start 'from scratch' Manchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials MORE (D-W.Va.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterSchumer opted for modest rules reform after pushback from moderates The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Connected Commerce Council - Biden faces reporters as his agenda teeters Democrats' filibuster gambit unravels MORE (D-Mont.), Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaBriahna Joy Gray: Last-minute push for voting legislation felt 'perfomative' Manchin: Biden spending plan talks would start 'from scratch' Manchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials MORE (D-Ariz.) and Angus KingAngus KingManchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials For 2022, the Senate must work in a bipartisan manner to solve the American people's concerns This week: Democrats face crunch time on voting rights MORE (I-Maine).

Democratic leaders have been in conversations with the key undecided votes as they try to figure out the path forward on Chipman's nomination. They've declined to say when they will call up his nomination.

But the Senate is poised to leave in a matter of days for a weeks-long break, which would punt action on Chipman's nomination until mid-September. The Senate will return to a packed schedule that includes fights over funding the government, the debt ceiling and Democrats' $3.5 trillion spending plan.

Sen. Dick DurbinDick DurbinManchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials Swalwell slams House Republican for touting funding in bill she voted down Schumer opted for modest rules reform after pushback from moderates MORE (D-Ill.), who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, said earlier this week that he was still trying to lock down support for the nomination among Democrats.

"We're working on it," he said when asked if Democrats had the votes.