President Barack Obama on Friday blasted Senate Republicans for holding up the nomination of Loretta Lynch to be the next attorney general, calling it “embarrassing” and dysfunction that “goes too far.”
“What we still have is this crazy situation where a woman who everybody agrees is qualified — who has gone after terrorists, who has worked with police officers to get gangs off the streets, who is trusted by the civil rights community and by police unions as being somebody who's fair and effective, and a good manager, nobody suggest otherwise, who's been twice confirmed by the United States Senate — for one of the biggest law enforcement jobs in the country has been now sitting there longer than the previous seven attorney general nominees combined, and there's no reason for it,” Obama said, breaking from his calmer tone to a more indignant one during a joint news conference with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi at the White House.
“Nobody can describe a reason for it beyond political gamesmanship in the Senate on an issue that's completely unrelated to her,” Obama said.
Senate Republicans are seeking to ensure language prohibiting public funding for abortion is part of a human trafficking bill.
“What are we doing here? I have to say, that there are times where the dysfunction in the Senate just goes too far. This is an example of it,” Obama said. “It's gone too far. Enough. Enough. Call Loretta Lynch for a vote, get her confirmed. Put her in place. Let her do her job. This is embarrassing, a process like this.”