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Mary Landrieu to block Jack Lew's nomination to serve as OMB chief

By Ed O'Keefe

Updated 6:32 p.m. ET
President Obama's pick to serve as head of the Office of Management and Budget looked headed for an easy Senate confirmation until this afternoon, when Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) announced she will place a hold on the nomination until the Obama administration lifts a moratorium on deep-water drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

"Although Mr. Lew clearly possesses the expertise necessary to serve as one of the President's most important economic advisers, I found that he lacked sufficient concern for the host of economic challenges confronting the Gulf Coast," Landrieu wrote in a letter informing Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid of her decision.

The Louisiana Democrat met with Lew on Sept. 14 and discussed the six-month moratorium and host of issues related to the Gulf Coast economic recovery, said Landrieu spokesman Aaron Saunders.

The administration issued a six-month moratorium on deep-water drilling shortly after the April 20 BP Deepwater Horizon explosion that is set to expire on Nov. 30.

A final report on the moratorium due by late October to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar may come a few weeks earlier, Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes told The Washington Post's Energy is Urgent conference on Thursday. That could conceivably allow Salazar to lift the moratorium before the Nov. 30 end date.

Landrieu and other Gulf Coast pols blasted the decision, arguing it would cost more than 46,000 jobs.

"The fact that the most acute of these economic challenges, the moratorium, results from a direct (and reversible) federal action only serves to harden my stance on Mr. Lew's nomination," Landrieu said. "I cannot support further action on Mr. Lew's nomination to be a key economic adviser to the president until I am convinced that the president and his administration understand the detrimental impacts that the actual and de facto moratoria continue to have on the Gulf Coast."

Jim Noe, executive director of the Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition, a group opposed to the moratorium, said he hopes Landrieu's move "will help us find a breakthrough in our quest for a solution to get shallow rigs back to work."

OMB spokesman Kenenth Baer responded: "Especially during this critical time in our economy and in our fiscal situation, the Senate should move quickly to vote on his confirmation before it recesses at the end of the month."

Earlier Thursday most of the members of the Senate Budget Committee gave their blessing to Lew's nomination, voting 22 to 1 to refer him to the full Senate. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) was the lone "no" vote.

On Tuesday Lew earned the approval of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Nominees to lead OMB are referred to both HSGAC, which deals with the "M," and the Budget panel, which handles the "B."

Landrieu's hold complicates the hopes of members of both parties to vote on Lew's confirmation before the Senate recesses for the November elections.

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below

By Ed O'Keefe  | September 23, 2010; 4:45 PM ET
Categories:  Confirmation Hearings, Congress  
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Comments

Obama should dissolve the Senate immediately. What good is an overwhelming majority anymore?

Posted by: jiji1 | September 23, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

So now it's the democrats themselves who are the party of no. And so close to the election too....hmmmm.

Posted by: AnnieP1 | September 23, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

See what in-breeding will get you.

Posted by: pjohn2 | September 23, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

The Senate needs to change it's idiotic rules that allow a single moron to hold up a nomination. It also needs to eliminate the filibuster. These types of rules cause them to act like children.

Posted by: pjohn2 | September 23, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Obama should dissolve the Senate immediately. What good is an overwhelming majority anymore?

Posted by: jiji1 | September 23, 2010 4:56 PM
==================
First he has to nominate himself chancellor. Then he can dissolve the Senate and name himself emperor ;)

Posted by: Cryos | September 23, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Drill, Drill, Drill Baby....at least one Democrat is smart enough to know we must drill now and drill everywhere.....after November 2nd, we will be drilling everywhere and reducing America's dependence on foreign oil while increasing employment all over the country! Mary Landrieu is joining the rest of the country against Obama!

Posted by: Realist201 | September 23, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone know if there is a connection between off-shore drilling and the position of the OMB director?

And who says Mafiosos can only be guys? Or Republicans?

Posted by: kishorgala | September 23, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

IF GOD IS WILLING AND DA CREEK DON'T RISE

Posted by: Jsuf | September 23, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Wow, and this from a dem about to lose her seat. What does his nomination have to do with the other?

Posted by: cadam72 | September 23, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

It's pig eating bacon. The crumbling has just started. The marriage of government and big corporations is having it's effect in the 'lawbreakers'.

Posted by: coqui44 | September 23, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

the Democrats should put a hold on any campaign assistance to the twit from LA
for future elections. Her selfishness
is typical of the morons in the Senate
at large.

Posted by: jimhorn | September 23, 2010 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Time for Louisiana to pay for its own cleanup.

White trash bimbo wants federal welfare? Nope.

Posted by: Garak | September 23, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

This is richly ironic. Jack Lew is highly qualified and appears to be relatively conservative on economic policy. My guess is that Lew's positions would be typically in line with what Senator Landrieu would want to see. Sad that party discipline among Senate Democrats continues to sink to new lows.

Posted by: ANetliner | September 23, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

This is richly ironic. Jack Lew is highly qualified and appears to be relatively conservative on economic policy. My guess is that Lew's positions would be typically in line with what Senator Landrieu would want to see. Sad that party discipline among Senate Democrats continues to sink to new lows.

Posted by: ANetliner | September 23, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

When it comes to small minds, Landrieu has once again shown the miniature nature of hers. This is an important appointment and she wants to hold it up over something that will be decided soon and deep water drilling has nothing to do with a budget guy's job.

Moron, thy name is Mary Landrieu, and I apologize to all true morons for including her with you, you should feel insulted.

Posted by: ronjeske | September 23, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

The only reasonable response is a permanent moratorium on all offshore drilling until that nitwit Landrieu is either voted out or resigns in disgrace.

Posted by: thrh | September 23, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

Bully for Senator Landrieu. The moratorium is ridiculous. It has been thrown out of court twice and one of the judges scolded the administration for stating that their scientific experts agreed with the goverments position. This was a bold face lie. All of the experts repudiated the goverments position stating that the moratorium was added after they signed off on the report. More gangsta government from Obama and his Chicago team.

Posted by: jkk1943 | September 23, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Guess Landrieu heard about the Presidents approval of a $2B loan to Brazil for deep water offshore drilling or the $1B backing for Mexico's drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

What a hypocrite!!!!!!!

Posted by: Jimbo77 | September 23, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

You go girl!!!

Posted by: JCM-51 | September 23, 2010 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Obama has zero credibility in his own party...the rest of us just see him as a bald-faced lying Socialist.

Posted by: JCM-51 | September 23, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Landrieu is not the hypocrit. Obama, the marxist, is the hypocrit. Get rid of Obama!!

Posted by: annnort | September 23, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

Landrieu is the latest example of the undemocratic and probably unconstitutional practice of senators to "place a hold" on some decision or appointment. Since when does democracy mean that one egotistical politician can decide policy or appointees to any position.

The Senate is our greatest roadblock to representative democracy in the U.S. and unlimited funds to elect politicians is the reason we have these idiotic roadblocks!!!

Posted by: bkrich | September 23, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

What an undemocratic idiot---Landrieu. Who is paying her?

Posted by: bkrich | September 23, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Nice to see that now a Democrat (?) has learned the Repuglican trick of holding up an unrelated national appointment to get her way on a local issue.

Posted by: chuck8 | September 23, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Of course the warnings about huge job losses haven't exactly panned out:

http://www.nola.com/newsflash/index.ssf/story/not-many-takers-for-bp-gulf-rig/241e07e180934389bf9057836187dd03

But if you are a Senator, D or R, facts have little to do with your rhetoric and actions.

Posted by: Clear_Eye | September 23, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Dems, the party of NO.

Posted by: illogicbuster | September 23, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

I think its time for Obama to kick some Dixie a$$. No more Federal dollars to Louisiana for oil cleanup. Those 9 electoral votes are solid for the GOP anyways.

Posted by: NewEra | September 23, 2010 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Landrieu needs political cover to show she's more republican than democrat...

it's sad that for a state with so many imbeciles per square meter, she would have to pander to stupidity.

so be it.

Posted by: FranknErnest | September 23, 2010 10:35 PM | Report abuse

the oil we drill doesnt just go to america.and we dont have enough oil reserves to come close to be independent from oil imports.

Posted by: donaldtucker | September 23, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

I guess if you can't beat 'em with an overwhelming, 59-vote majority, some Dems want to join 'em. How can we give all we're giving to try to keep this country from falling backwards into Republican class warfare for the rich if our very own Democratic senators keep acting like Republicans when the chips are down?

Posted by: mylesgordon | September 23, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Amazing! A Democrat senator has, at last, showed some cojones and that senator is a she. It is also a given that she's packing more than Obama.

Posted by: gun313 | September 23, 2010 11:37 PM | Report abuse

Those who see Obamevil in all things should simply examine their own record of destroying the economy, waging illegal and permanent war, war profiteering, condoning torture, misusing our military and outing American intelligence officers for partisan political purposes, subverting the nation's legal system, packing the Supreme Court with corporate patsies, worshipping a moronic failed ex-Governor, and reducing this nation to a knuckle dragging, gun toting, racist caricature of its once great self

Posted by: lmm31 | September 24, 2010 1:54 AM | Report abuse

Big Oil is Senator Landrieu's main concern. You have to be loyal to the corporations that pay for you seat or you lose your job.
If these morons were worried about jobs how do they explain allowing all of our manufacturing jobs to be outsourced to China.
It's not the workers that Landrieu is worried about. Follow the money.

Posted by: vw52 | September 24, 2010 6:17 AM | Report abuse

Landrieu is a short-sighted fool, beholden to special interests. In fact, this further reveals who are the true masters of the Senate, and it is not the American people. We now have a government controlled by the corporations.

Posted by: clarkesq | September 24, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Drill, Drill, Drill Baby....at least one Democrat is smart enough to know we must drill now and drill everywhere.....after November 2nd, we will be drilling everywhere and reducing America's dependence on foreign oil while increasing employment all over the country! Mary Landrieu is joining the rest of the country against Obama!

Posted by: Realist201 | September 23, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

-----------------------------------------
Please try to understand that there is no petroleum-based energy independence for the United States. We squandered out oil reserves when oil was still under $5/bbl, and there just hasn't been any real growth in domestic oil production in the past forty years, offshore notwithstanding. You're trying to live in a fantasy world.

"Drill, Baby, Drill" is the petulant mantra of a spoiled child who can't understand that his sippy-cup is just empty. Mommy can refill the sippy-cup, but there will be no replenishment of our oil reserves. They're gone, and the petroleum economy is over.

If you take a drive through the parts of the country that our domestic oill supplies used to come from, you'll see hundreds of pumping rigs sitting dead, because there's nowhere left that they can be useful. None of those old pumping rigs is worth even enough to be salvaged for scrap, but they're still worth more than the "Drill, Baby, Drill" fantasy.

Oil is over. Get used to it, and move on.

Posted by: lonquest | September 24, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Hopefully, the elections will have a positive effect on the requirement that Sen. Landrieu gets dismissed. What is wrong with this bird?? Why doesn't she just change sides and be done with it....??

We sure don't want her any more...

Posted by: rbaldwin2 | September 24, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't think about lifting the ban unless I were able to make sure there would be a bill that would limit any drilling for phaseing out for replacement and jobs to clean energy.

Posted by: Rayden12341 | September 24, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

This is another issue that Glenn Beck nailed 2 months ago. I'm starting to actually believe some of his revelations are coming true.

He revealed that while Obama was stopping deepwater drilling off of the U.S. we were loaning money to Brazil and Mexico for deepwater drilling off of their coasts. To make the issue more insulting to our gulf coast states was that Obama's mentor George Soros is heavily invested in Brazilian oil.

I have always said to myself, what if even 20% of Beck's stuff is right on? If he's right on just 2 of 10 issues we are in trouble.

Posted by: thehamptons1 | September 24, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I read the headline and thought "Great, a dem wants to stop a pro-business, corporate dem type from taking the job."

Unfortunately, the headline should read "Dem compliments corporate dem, but puts nomination on hold to serve big oil!"

It is amazing how their money rules our world.

Posted by: rat-raceparent | September 24, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Energy firms own that state.

I saw a map of our nations gas lines once, and if you had a chance to see it -- you'd understand. Everything runs through LA, for some reason.

We need Huey Long back!

Posted by: rat-raceparent | September 24, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Landrieu is latest creature to emerge from the corrupt Louisiana political mire. She was as much to blame for the Katrina disaster in New Orleans as anyone and now is holding the workings of the Federal government hostage to her parochial concerns.

Posted by: Watersville | September 24, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Thehamptons1 said:

"This is another issue that Glenn Beck nailed 2 months ago. ... He revealed that while Obama was stopping deepwater drilling off of the U.S. we were loaning money to Brazil and Mexico for deepwater drilling off of their coasts. ... I have always said to myself, what if even 20% of Beck's stuff is right on? If he's right on just 2 of 10 issues we are in trouble."

The truth is that Beck lied on this - as he does on many things. Just because you tell a lie a thousand times - it does not then become the truth.

As simple google fact check leads to the debunking of Beck's lie that some "geniuses" here are continuing to spread:
http://www.snopes.com/politics/gasoline/braziloil.asp

While the US government is making a loan to a Brazilian oil company - it was decided on by a Republican-appointed (Bush) committee. The Republicans do these things and then try to pass the blame off on Democrats when they're caught. Slimy little . . .

Why are Americans so easily suckered by the right-wing's total disregard for the truth? Why is the right-wing so quick to lie and distort AND claim to be masters of the moral high road? It's pathetic and really depressing that there are either so many morons or so many dishonest Americans.

Posted by: wandering1day | September 24, 2010 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Call off the moratorium, get him confirmed, then reinstate the moratorium.

Hardball time.

Posted by: wallywabash | September 24, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Madame Landrieu - you’re showing the American people how selfish you really are. It’s already been documented that the six month moratorium WILL NOT affect job loss in the gulf region, but here you are. I’m surprised you haven’t blocked raising the taxes on big oil, because the 4 billion in tax credits they already get isn’t enough. GREEDY gets, what GREEDY wants. Oh, how's that money that you got for the Army Core working out for you? So far you've been lucky, no big hurricanes this year. VERY SAD!!!

Posted by: madashellvoter | September 24, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Madame Landrieu you’re showing the American people how selfish you really are. It’s already been documented that the six month moratorium WILL NOT affect job loss in the gulf region, but here you are. I’m surprised you haven’t blocked raising the taxes on big oil, because the 4 billion in tax credits they already get isn’t enough. GREEDY gets, what GREEDY wants. Oh, and by the way...how's all that tax money you got for the Army Core doing these days? Hope it's better then the last time, or you will be singing the blues. Good riddance!

Posted by: madashellvoter | September 24, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Good riddance to this useless crab. She understands nada about the Gulf, and should be home cutting paper dolls and arranging for Tupperware reviews.

Time to change Senate rules. How the hell did it ever get changed to allow one dumbass to block everything?

Posted by: 2229 | September 24, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

This is very irresponsible on her part. Not only is it blackmail, Louisiana doesn't own the Gulf. It's just the most irresponsible state on the Gulf. It's been that way for a very long time, we're all still paying for their ineptitude in storm management, now we have to pay for an ocean killing oil spill too? She wants more risk without wells being checked out to make sure we don't have another spill.

This is more proof that excessive partisanship is for idiots. It doesn't matter which party member has bad ideas & bad practices, it matters what they do.

Posted by: Nymous | September 24, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

"Obama should dissolve the Senate immediately. What good is an overwhelming majority anymore?
Posted by: jiji1 | September 23, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse"

this isn't star wars and obama isn't the emperor...
if obama tried doing this, he would be impeached and removed...
he might already be elegible to be impeached as we speak...

Posted by: DwightCollins | September 24, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

the louisiana battle is always between big oil/gas and big gambling over who owns the most politicians.

Posted by: george32 | September 24, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

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