Meanwhile, Priebus Says There's "No Reason" To Delay Hearings For Background Checks
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@SenMajLdr: We confirmed 7 cabinet appointments the day Obama was sworn in. I understand [Democrats' delay] but we need to grow up here pic.twitter.com/DHdHpJzcp3— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) January 8, 2017
In response to concerns that President-elect Donald Trump's cabinet picks are being rushed through the confirmation process, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday that Democrats need to "grow up."
"I know how it feels when you're coming into a new situation that the other guys won the election," McConnell said. "What did we do? We confirmed seven cabinet appointments the day Obama was sworn in.
"We didn't like most of them, either, but he won the election," McConnell added. "So all of these little procedural complaints are related to their frustration at having not only lost the White House, but having lost the Senate, but we need to sort of grow up here and get past that."
McConnell was responding to demands from Democrats that Republicans delay confirmation hearings set to begin this week because some of Trump's cabinet picks haven't completed ethics reviews and other background checks.
As ThinkProgress reported Sunday, McConnell actually took the opposite position in 2009, when he demanded that “financial disclosures must be complete” before any confirmation hearings were scheduled for Obama's cabinet picks.
Mitch McConnell to Reid in 2009: nominee "financial disclosures must be complete... prior 2hearing being scheduled." pic.twitter.com/wxCfXTPS6g— Norm Eisen (@NormEisen) January 8, 2017
“These best practices serve the Senate well,” he wrote in a letter to then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, “and we will insist on their fair and consistent application.”
ThinkProgress notes it's not the first time McConnell has reversed course since the election on the Senate confirmation process. "After refusing to even allow a confirmation hearing for President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland for nearly a year ... McConnell said on Wednesday that 'the American people simply will not tolerate' it if Democrats refuse to confirm a Trump Supreme Court nominee."
According to the Office of Government Ethics, if confirmation hearings proceed this week, it will mark the first time in the OGE's 40-year history that cabinet picks have been considered by the Senate without completing ethics reviews.
Also Sunday, Trump's chief of staff, Reince Priebus, told Fox News there's "no reason" to delay the confirmation hearings for background checks.
“They have to get moving. I mean, they have to move faster. And they have all the information. These are people that have been highly successful in their lives. They need to move quicker," Priebus said, according to Raw Story. “The fact is there’s no reason. I mean, it’s the first week of January, they have all the details that they need, they have all the information that they need. It’s no different from any other new administration coming in and the American people demand it.”
Watch the clip below.