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Hyde-Smith votes to change senate rules to speed up confirmation process

Cindy-Hyde Smith. Photo courtesy of Telesouth Communications Inc.

U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith voted to advance a resolution to change Senate rules and overcome partisan foot-dragging on judicial and executive branch nominations.

Hyde-Smith serves on the Senate Rules Committee, which has approved a resolution to change the Senate rules to reduce debate time for most presidential nominees.  The resolution would institute a permanent rule to limit post-cloture debate on most executive branch nominees from 30 hours to eight hours, and for district court nominees from 30 hours to two hours.

“The traditions of the Senate should be respected, but Senate rules are now being abused to delay the confirmation of President Trump’s nominees,” Hyde-Smith said. “These tactics are unprecedented and unfair. This resolution is a responsible way to act on nominees and give the Senate more time to consider legislation.  It deserves bipartisan support when it gets to the full Senate for consideration.”

The resolution is a revival of a temporary rule implemented with bipartisan support during the 113th Congress (2013-14) when the Democrats controlled the Senate.  Senator James Lankford (R-Okla.) introduced the resolution in December 2017 in response to continual Democratic actions to delay votes on Trump judicial and executive nominees.

Since 2017, Senate Democrats have forced cloture votes on 89 Trump administration nominees, far exceeding the combined 34 cloture votes taken during the Clinton, Bush, and Obama administrations.  Today, the Senate has hundreds of executive, district court, and circuit court nominations awaiting confirmation.

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