UPDATED 12:41 PM PT — Fri. Nov. 30, 2018
Outgoing Republican Senator Jeff Flake is drawing increased criticism from his colleagues over his apparent obstruction of judicial nominations.
Senate Republicans had hoped to approve as many federal judges as possible before the start of the new congressional session in January. However, Flake doesn’t appear to be budging on threats to withhold his vote on any judicial nominations until legislation to protect the special counsel gets a vote.
His stance has already blocked the confirmation of one nominee this week, with 21 others held up in committee.
Flake’s push comes despite top Republicans saying a bill to protect the special counsel is unnecessary.
“This is a solution is search of a problem,” stated Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. “The president’s not going to fire Robert Mueller, nor do I think he should, nor do I think he should not be allowed to finish.”
In a recent interview, Senator Flake said he plans to force a vote on the Mueller bill next week, following two previous failed attempts.