Murkowski Supports Needed Reform for Senate Nomination Process

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) issued the following statement after voting to set a precedent that reduces the post-cloture debate time for all sub-cabinet level nominees and lower court judges:

“Those who know me know that I am a strong supporter of the institution of the Senate and our process, and I am reluctant to change the rules under which we operate. But in recent years, it has become clear that rules that have worked for decades—even a century—are now being abused to delay and obstruct in a manner and frequency that is unprecedented. 

“Regardless of how one may have voted in the last election, our President is entitled to fill out his appointments. What we’ve seen over the past two years is a deliberate effort to prevent President Trump from having his team in place to help serve the country. Noncontroversial nominees have been forced to sit on the sidelines waiting for months or even years to be considered, only to finally be confirmed with few or zero votes in opposition.

“If a member doesn’t support a nominee—vote no. But to drag the Senate through days of delay and obstruction, using up valuable time that could be spent on legislative priorities, is simply not the way to conduct business. These dilatory tactics do not serve anyone well—not the American people who expect a functioning government, not people who agree to serve the public, and not the Senate, which has many pressing matters to attend to. 

“Recognizing that the Senate I joined 16 years ago is not the Senate of today in how we conduct ourselves and respect our internal rules to allow for an orderly process of legislating, I reluctantly voted to change the process and restore normalcy to the Senate."

Cloture Votes on Nominees During 1st Congress

Graphic 1


Qualified Nominees with Bipartisan Support

Graphic 2

Post-Cloture Debate Time on Nominees

Graphic 3