April 09, 2009

Tensions Heat Up Over Hamilton

CQ's Legal Beat is reporting that, in a letter to Sen. Specter, Sen. Leahy has rejected the idea of holding another hearing for David Hamilton despite the fact that the GOP boycotted the first hearing because they felt they did not have adequate time to prepare.  From the tone of the letters, tensions appear to be mounting. 

It was the second testy exchange of correspondence between Specter and Leahy on the subject. On March 24, Specter asked Leahy not to schedule the Hamilton confirmation hearing before the recess. Next to his signature, Specter scrawled, "Pat -- if you insist on this schedule for Hamilton, you will (be) starting on the first (President) Obama nomination in a very contentious manner which will provoke opposition and prove counter productive."

Leahy replied on March 25, saying "with a two-week Easter recess approaching, I feel it important to proceed with the hearing." Leahy also reminded Specter that Republicans had slowed action on some of Obama's Justice Department nominees even after Leahy agreed to delay committee consideration.

In his own handwritten postscript, Leahy wrote "We have a lot ahead of us -- I've delayed many items at Republican requests only to have new and artificial delays made. It's frustrating."

This is frustrating the GOP who held two confirmation hearings for Justice Roberts when he was appointed to the D.C. Circuit.

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