In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Party Of No? It Would Appear So!


"Between 1949 and 2009 there were 24 nominees on which cloture was forced," Baker said. "In just the first 9 months of the Obama administration, there have been five such votes."

During the George W. Bush administration, Baker notes, there were seven such votes.

"It's...frankly, trying to overturn the results of the last election."

But Democrats have 60 voting members, and, thus, the ability to push these people through (as long as they stay united against GOP filibusters). So what should Harry Reid and Obama do to get results? "They have to stand up, they have to be willing to call the Republicans on what they're doing. File the cloture petitions and force the Republicans to come out and actually show their obstruction," Baker said. "On many of these, they have the votes. It's just a delay game."

PFAW has been particularly incensed by the months-long delay of Dawn Johnsen, who Obama tapped to be head up the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel in February.

About The Author


Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at