comscore McConnell: Dems should ‘grow up’ and consider Trump nominees | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Top News

McConnell: Dems should ‘grow up’ and consider Trump nominees

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.

WASHINGTON >> Republicans on Sunday defended their party against Democratic complaints that Congress is being forced to consider nominees for Donald Trump’s administration without completed ethics reviews.

“All of these little procedural complaints are related to their frustration in having not only lost the White House, but having lost the Senate,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

“I understand that,” he added, “but we need to sort of grow up here and get past that.”

At issue is whether people picked by the president elect — in some cases millionaires and billionaires with complex personal finances — would face conflicts of interest when it comes to overseeing taxpayer spending. The Office of Government Ethics says in some cases the office hasn’t received even draft financial disclosure reports for nominees appearing before Congress this week, when the Senate plans to hold at least nine confirmation hearings, beginning Tuesday.

McConnell suggested the complaints amounted to sour grapes from a party that did poorly in the 2016 congressional and presidential elections. The Kentucky Republican noted that Republicans were in the same boat eight years ago when they had to swiftly confirm multiple nominees who he described as “wildly liberal.”

But the director of the Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub, said the Republican management of the confirmation hearings is unusual considering that that in some cases, the office had not received even initial draft financial disclosure reports from Trump nominees.

“I am not aware of any occasion in the four decades since OGE was established when the Senate held a confirmation hearing before the nominee had completed the ethics review process,” wrote Shaub.

Reince Priebus, Trump’s incoming chief of staff, rejected any suggestion that Republicans should slow down. In an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” Priebus said Democrats “have all the information” they need and should move fast because voters mandated it.

“Change was voted for and change we will get,” he said.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said the ethics review is aimed at ensuring wealthy Cabinet members work for the American people instead of “their own bottom line, and that they plan to fully comply with the law.”

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature
Comments (77)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Leave a Reply

  • The voters have mandated nothing. Partisanship aside, the fact is Mr. Trump IS going to be president, and we will all need to accept that. However, any declaration that he has received the mandate of the voters is disingenuous. He has received the electoral numbers needed, but there is a significant amount of gap between the candidates in the popular count. The Republican party needs to take that into account.

      • 54% voted for a candidate other than Trump. 45 of the last 53 elections were won by larger electoral college margins. Trump has the lowest favorables of any incoming President. Obama began 2009 with 68% favorable ratings; Trump’s 43% is a historic low. A plurality of Americans think he will be a “poor” or “terrible” President. His Cabinet picks have historically low ratings. Trump is historically unpopular. THAT IS NOT A MANDATE.

        • @ Mr. Mililani
          Electoral College is the Law of the Land for 240 years. Don’t like it it go change it.

          @ Paulh808
          Looks like a RED USA
          KaBoom!

          January 20 #MAGA

        • In a way that he probably wouldn’t understand,, or certainly in a way that he wouldn’t admit to, Trump was right. The election was rigged — for white people.

          The Electoral College was racist in its conception and it is racist today. It was conceived as a way to grant more power to the southern states by counting slaves as 3/5 of a person, even though they couldn’t vote.

          Today, if you divide the total U.S. population (about 319 million) by 538 Electoral College votes, each Electoral College vote should equal about 593K people. So, if we take our nation’s most populated state—California—and divide its 39.1 million population by 593K, the state should get sixty-six Electoral College votes. Under the Electoral College system, however, the state only gets fifty-five Electoral College votes.

          That’s a difference of eleven Electoral College votes—more than all the electoral college votes of the swing states of Iowa (six) and New Hampshire (four).

          It also happens that California has our nation’s largest minority population, with about 24 million people, or 61.5 percent of the state’s population.

          Meanwhile, if we look at one of our nation’s least populated states—North Dakota—and divide its 757K population by 593K, the state should get about one electoral vote. However, under the Electoral College system, it gets three votes.

          It also happens that North Dakota has the lowest minority population in the country—less than ten thousand.

          That means in North Dakota a voter—who is most likely to be white—has three times more say in who gets to become President. And it means that a California voter—who is most likely to be not white—has a vote that is worth only about 83 percent as the rest of the country.

          In fact, if we look at the ten states with the highest minority populations and compare them to the states with the ten with the lowest minority populations, the results are just as glaringly unfair.

          In election law, statutes are deemed to be biased if they have the effect of disproportionately disadvantaging any group. Intent doesn’t matter in deciding whether a voting law is racist, only effect. By that standard, the Electoral College system is racist and will become increasingly racist as the country’s demographic balance shifts.

        • Did you write that yourself? Would the election results be different if a voter ID was required?

        • Vector-borne diseases are infections transmitted by the bite of infected arthropod species, such as mosquitoes, ticks, triatomine bugs, sandflies, and blackflies1. Arthropod vectors are cold-blooded (ectothermic) and thus especially sensitive to climatic factors.

        • IRT bsdetection: First of all the 3/5’s compromise was done away with after the Civil War so I’m not sure how it is relevant to the recent election.

          If I understand your post the complaint is that sparsely populated states are over-represented in the electoral college. And because those states are populated by evil white folks who never vote for democrats the system is rigged and racist? And because large population states populated by virtuous minorities who always vote democrat are short changed in the electoral college the system is similarly rigged and racist?

          I must say you have an active imagination as well as too much time on your hands. It may be time for a tune-up for your foil hat.

        • Keonigohan, fact is you republicans cannot win without tilting the playing field. You won’t always be able to do this. Why are republicans so afraid to count votes? http://www.gregpalast.com/the-republican-sabotage-of-the-vote-recounts-in-michigan-and-wisconsin/#more-13045

          Republicans are proud of their voter suppression efforts but now republicans will have to perform. But you know what? Pretty hard to perform well when you are in a swamp of corruption and greed.

        • DEI: Yes, I’m aware that the 3/5 compromise ended with the Civil War. My point in mentioning it was simply to make the point that the Electoral College system was racist at the time of it inception and continues to be so today. I did not say that anyone was “evil” or “virtuous.” Which party people vote for is not germane to my point. I was arguing that there are two, fundamentally undemocratic problems with the Electoral College: 1) the Presidential election process violates the principle of one-man-one-vote, and 2) the impact of the Electoral College system is de facto discriminatory.

      • All the redneck stateso in the Midwest and South voted for Trump. All the coastline states in the west and many in the east voted for Hillary, and those are the states with the most educated, most employed and highest productive states in the union, and not beholden to the fossil fuel and oil, gas and fracking industries

        • I’m puzzled. How the heck did states with people who are clearly superior in every way lose the election to under-educated redneck states?

        • Whatever works. We now have a strong leader who can talk with Putin and not be like wimpy Obama. Let’s wait and see how things work out. Rex Tillerson will be a huge asset.

        • Vector you must remember that Sarge is a pinko commie at heart. Besides sucking off government for most of his life he is now allied with Putin, his hero.

        • Yes Sarge, just ask anyone who lives in Chad, the poorest country in the world. They were improving until your hero decided the common folk shouldn’t have basic amenities and so he ended them. Great going.

    • You bring up a good point. Hillary won CA by 4 million votes. Without the huge disparity in CA, Trump would have also won the popular vote by a million. So why is CA so out of line with the rest of the U.S.? How about 50 years of open borders, anchor babies, provisions allowing relatives to immigrate. On and on.

      • Nonsensical argument. You could say the same thing about texas. Without the electoral votes from texas, trump would not have won. You see how silly such an argument is? The fact is, almost 3 million more people voted for clinton than trump, and trump won with one of lowest electoral vote margins in history. Hardly a mandate.

        • What does driver’s licenses for illegals have to do with anything cei? License verification is sent to the secretary of state to confirm citizenship before voter registration can be completed.

        • IRT skinut: Don’t ask, their argument stops there…They don’t answer your kind of questions…CEI the same guy who doesn’t think Russia knows how to Google the Electoral College…#MAGA

    • Holy crap, talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Expect it to be even worse trying to get Trump’s swamp of puppets getting confirmed even if they invoke the nuclear option to prevent filibusters. Even a lot of the GOP is wary of his nominees and don’t want to just be a rubber stamp for Trump’s ineptness. If they do that, then they’ll own every failure in Trump’s administration.

  • McConnell is the same idiot who blocked all Obama’s nominees. How can he tell anyone to grow up when he has been the most childish offender himself!

    • Please cite which of Obama’s scrubs was blocked. Obama won and got all of his incompetents in, so Trump won he gets his guys (people who have actually achieved something). Who is the idiot now?

    • McConnell was also the one that said he would do everything in his power to make sure that Obama was a one term president. Hmmmm. So now the Dems should grow up? Interesting.

    • He was responding to the will of the people. Dems lost a thousand positions in a historical reversal from Solid Dem majority to all Rep. control. Tell me, did you support Hillary’s plan to increase by 500% the number of Syrian refugees? What percent should Hawaii accept?

    • McConnell is the same senator who said after Obama’s election, the Republicans would block everything that Obama proposes, and make sure he was a one term president. He is nothing but a slimmy hypocrite and a chronic liar with the rest of the Alt-Wrong Republicans and Trump. Whatever they say and do, I automatically reject it as fraud and Alt-Wrong propaganda

  • I believe that instead of herding all the poor and elderly to the gas chambers. The Chump and republicans grand scheme is to eliminate social security, Medicare and Obamacare so that there will be a phenomenal rise in death by natural causes. The undereducated contributed to their own demise. Very scary but not impossible.

  • Way to go Mitch! Sadly, though, expecting democrats to grow up is a fool’s errand. Waldo got spanked and democrats down to the local level were booted because their ideas are bankrupt. Of course they can’t admin that in public. So they attack qualified Trump nominees.

  • Back in 2008, McConnell publicly came out and said that he wanted to make the elected black president a one term president. He did not succeed. Nobody cried sour grapes at that time. However, what it did do was a disservice to the American people. The Republicans blocked virtually everything the administration tried to accomplish. For those who are not in favor of Trump, just make sure he becomes a one term president.

  • Extremely disingenuous for mcconnell to call for democrats to grow up when he practically threw a hissy fit in 2008 in declaring the republicans would not cooperate in anything obama tried to do. He’s also being very self-serving since his wife is up for confirmation.

  • Yeah,The Dems here sure need some “growing up”! Amen to that! With all the Sore Losers here, opining with ridiculous comments and Fake info. How do we Reach these guys? They Lost!Simple as that! As I said……Do they need some kind of “Participation Trophy” for Voting because they lost! In the real world,There are Winners and There are Losers. You guys LOST! Get Over it!

    Yep,The Libs will fit right in with Al Sharpton’s ” Season of Civil Disobedience” movement. Sheeeeeese! They’ll never get it !#Sorelosers

  • The majority of the voters did not mandate this change. Mitch McConnell wants to install cabinet ministers who plan to do the exact opposite of their roles and diminish or abolish the purpose of these cabinets. It’s not that Dems need to grow up. They are trying to prevent a disastrous outcome for millions of people and the environment. Mitch McConnell is one of the most nefarious senators we’ve ever had and it’s too bad he wields so much power.

  • Glad the Dems will take a serious look at each nominee. How they approve Jeff Sessions after he was rejected for a judgeship due to racist comments. McConnell the person who held up Garland’s appointment. He has some nerve to lecture the democrats.

    Who know, we might still be a part of the Kremlin if Trump gets his way!

  • The shoes is on the other foot and dems will whine and complain. So yup, they’ll try to gridlock the system. The problem is a lot of Americans are tired of how non-productive our elected officials are. Heck, maybe they should cut the Congress by say 20% to save some of our tax dollars.

    • Did the Republicans “whine and complain” when the “shoe was on the other foot”??? Or do you call that something different??? Americans will at first embrace the gridlock that Democrats will create, anything to stop Trump…If Trump surprises and proves like his Son in Law said, that his campaign talk was all talk and he didn’t mean those things, THeN America will be upset with gridlock…#MAGA

  • BTW, did any of the celebrities that said they’d leave our country should Trump win leave yet? : ) Gotta have some humor after an election with two terrible candidates. But can’t complain, it’s our system and US is still a great country.

  • Meet the new swamp, ten times worse than the worst swamp. lol, Republicans enjoy your new swamp. I thought they would have at least do an attempt at ethics reviews. But I forget, the current republican party has no ethics so they have no idea what that is. I understand. This is going to be the most corrupt administration in history.

  • Senator Mortician, the biggest obstructionist of the last 8 years is calling for cooperation ?? I didn’t vote for either despicable candidates, but I hope the Democrats in Congress give the Java Man thinking of the Republicans exactly what the Republicans gave President Obama.

  • Does winning the Senate now mean that you never have to abide by the rules any more? How convenient. Do they can nominate anyone they want without any input from the other half of the country? I don’t think so.

  • Hypocrisy!

    In 2009, Mitch McConnell sent the following letter to Harry Reid, outlining the process he demanded for Obama’s nominees. Note how many of the terms listed in his letter he is willing to ignore when considering Republican nominees.

    “The senate has the Constitutional duty to provide its Advice and Consent on Presidential nominations, a duty which we take seriously. In consultation with our Ranking Members, we reaffirm our commitment to conduct the appropriate review of these nominations, consistent with the long standing and best practice of committees, regardless of which political party is in the majority. These best practices serve the Senate well, and we will insist on their fiar and consistent applications.

    “Therefore, prior to considering any time agreements on the floor on any nominee, we expect the following standards will be met:
    1. The FBI background check is complete and submitted to the committee in time for review and prior to a hearing being noticed.
    2. The Office of Government Ethics letter is complete and submitted to the committee in time for review and prior to a committee hearing.
    3. Financial disclosures statements (and tax returns for applicable committees) are complete and submitted to the committee for review prior to a hearing being selected.
    4. All committee questionnaires are complete and have been returned to the committee. A reasonable opportunity for follow-up questions has been afforded committee members, and nominees have answered, with sufficient time for review prior to a committee vote.
    5. The nominee is will to have committee staff interviews, where that has ben the practice.
    6. The nomine has had a hearing.
    7. The nominee agrees to courtesy visits with members when requested.
    8. The nominee has committed to cooperate with the Ranking Member onrequests for information and transparency.

    “There will be additional requirements, honoring the tradition of the Senate, for Judicial nominees. These common sense standards and long standing practices will ensure that the Senate has had the opportunity to fairly review a nominee’s record and to make an informed decision prior to a vote.”

Scroll Up