McDonnell drops Sledd nomination to Cabinet in response to Democratic opposition
Just hours after being sworn as governor, Bob McDonnell has suffered his first defeat at the hands of the Democratically-controlled state senate, as he quietly drops his nomination of a cabinet secretary whose confirmation they had threatened to block.
Instead of swearing in Richmond businessman Bob Sledd as secretary of commerce and trade at a Capitol ceremony Sunday, he administered the oath to fellow businessman Jim Cheng instead and named Sledd to serve as an unpaid Senior Economic Advisor.
The position does not require the confirmation of the senate, where Democrats had said they would not vote for Sledd's appointment because they believed his service on the boards of three corporations posed a conflict of interest.
McDonnell appears to have sidestepped their concerns over Sledd's potential conflict by giving him a titled advisor position charged with similar responsibilities as he would have held as a commerce secretary. Sledd will remain on the three boards and it is unclear if concerns over potential conflicts will be resolved by the move.
But McDonnell's concession demonstrates the power the shrunken Democratic party still holds in Richmond because of its majority in a single chamber of the state legislature. Despite a Republican sweep in November and expansion of the GOP's majority in the House, control of the senate gives the opposition party a veto over McDonnell's agenda.
More to come as the story develops.
January 17, 2010; 11:37 AM ET
Categories: Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman
Save & Share: Previous: McDonnell's inaugural money came from donor packages
Next: Virgil Goode: "Groups have talked to me about running"
Posted by: wewintheylose | January 17, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JayJackson2 | January 17, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: blasmaic | January 17, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: junomoneta88 | January 17, 2010 9:01 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.