Lawmakers seek to unclog road to confirmation

Vince Coglianese Contributor
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WASHINGTON — Hoping to unclog the Senate and spare scores of presidential appointees from what is often a grueling confirmation process, leading lawmakers in both parties are moving to cut the number of administration posts that are subject to Senate approval.

The proposal to end Senate review of about 200 executive branch positions would be the most serious effort in recent years to pare the chamber’s constitutional power of advice and consent. It amounts to a rare voluntary surrender of Congressional clout, and it has high-caliber, bipartisan support with the endorsement of the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, and the Republican leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

“We are losing very good people because the process has become so onerous, so lengthy and so duplicative,” said Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine and a leading advocate of the bill. “Why should there be a full F.B.I background check back to age 18 for an individual serving on a part-time board?”

Full Story: Lawmakers Seek to Unclog Road to Confirmation – NYTimes.com