Republican senators who had been blocking some Obama State Department nominees for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) handed the presidential candidate a loss by lifting their holds and confirming the nominees.
The Hill reported:
The Senate approved the nominations of Azita Raji to be ambassador to Sweden, Samuel Heins to be an ambassador to Norway and John Estrada to be an ambassador to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, as well as Brian Egan to be a legal adviser to the State Department and Thomas Shannon to be an under secretary of State for political affairs by a voice vote.
Before Friday, Republican senators had blocked each of the nominees on behalf of Cruz, who has been away from Washington.
The Texas Republican has been campaigning in early-voting states, but has pledged to block State Department nominees over the Iran nuclear deal. He is scheduled to campaign in South Carolina on Friday.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who chairs the Judiciary Committee, had also been blocking Egan’s nomination amid his battle with the State Department over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and top aides.
Grassley removed his hold after the State Department responded to his requests, so Ted Cruz lost another piece of Senate campaign platform. In reality, this was a move by Senate Republicans to undercut Cruz and demonstrate how much they don’t like him.
It would have been impossible to imagine Senate Republicans denying a request made by Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) when he was running for the party’s nomination in 2008. Cruz has been using the Senate as a media platform for his presidential run since he arrived in Washington. He has nuked bridges with all of his fellow senators. It would be difficult to find a senator who has been less liked than Cruz is by his colleagues in modern history.
Ted Cruz is so disliked that Republicans would rather confirm Obama nominees than do anything to help him win the nomination.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association