Senate Republicans today blocked a vote on the nomination of Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C.) to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
If the Republicans couldn't slip much lower, they found a way. They have voted to block the nomination of Congressman Mel Watt. His background is impeccable. He's been dealing with the housing market for over 20 years. He introduced the prohibit preditory lender act before the housing crash. Had it been adopted it could have prevented the housing/financial crisis. He's worked against risky mortgage loaning.
The Senate voted 56 to 42 to proceed to a vote on Watt's nomination -- shy of the 60 votes required to end debate.
The delaying tactic was the latest episode in a contentious series of battles over President Obama's nominees and could pave the way for a renewed effort by Democrats to change the chamber's rules. They have the votes to do that. It's the so-called nuclear option.
Watt's a guy who is independent and will continue to work hard for us.
So what's the reason the Republicans have stopped his nomination?
The reason is he's a victim of obstruction for obstruction sake.
Despite being knowledgeable and capable, he's failed the standard GOP litmus test. Is he Republican? No. Is he a good ol' boy? No. Is he white? No. Three strikes and you're out.
Senator Elizabeth Warren backed him vociferously as you'll see below. Perhaps that, as much as his being Black and a Democrat killed his nomination. The most influential woman on Capitol Hill is Hillary Clinton. The most feared is Elizabeth Warren.