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Published: Sun, February 05, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Senate Finance Committee Advances Price Nomination As Head Of HHS

Senate Finance Committee Advances Price Nomination As Head Of HHS

Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., center, nominee for Health and Human Services secretary, is seen with Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, before his Senate Finance Committee confirmation hearing on January 24.

Sen. Barrasso chided his rebellious colleagues across the aisle, saying he took the "extraordinary step" of suspending several rules for the day because of the boycott. The next three Cabinet officials will play a large role in pushing Republicans' domestic agenda, including the repeal of the Affordable Care Act and the overhaul of the US tax code.

Democrats accused both nominees of withholding crucial information after heated confirmation hearings. Senate aides said a cloture vote on the DeVos nomination now is set for early February 3, with final action possible on February 6.

Republicans supported Sessions, but some criticized the Democrats for playing partisan politics.

Sen. Susan Collins of ME and Sen.

During the Committee hearing in the judiciary, the Democrats took advantage of the 2-hour trick.

Mr Trump said he would advise Senate Republicans to "go nuclear" if his Supreme Court pick was blocked. "As I've said, it's fine to ask Sessions policy questions about votes on legislation, but to imply that he had a principled objection to a provision in a particular bill, that he therefore didn't support the underlying objective of that legislation and that sort of an approach is unfair", Grassley said.

The phrase is a reference to the so-called nuclear option, a parliamentary procedure which would change the rules and allow the Senate to approve a nomination with a simple majority.

Meanwhile, news outlets report that Democrats on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee employed a similar tactic on Wednesday, boycotting the vote on Trump's nominee to lead the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Scott Pruitt.

Rex Tillerson, nominee for secretary of state, will get votes on the Senate floor Wednesday afternoon. "This will impact future EPA nominees".

Republicans, with 52 seats in the Senate, will likely have little trouble confirming Mnuchin and Price in the full Senate.

Sessions was among the earliest and staunchest supporters of Trump's presidential campaign, and he was the first senator to publicly back Trump.

Democrats also said a bank run by Mnuchin used a process for handling home foreclosures that critics have associated with fraud.

Senator Sessions and Rep. Price's nominations weren't the only anti-LGBTQ nominations that moved forward this week, however.

Both men and congressional Republicans said they'd done nothing wrong. The 14 republicans then voted unanimously to move the Mnuchin and Price nominations on to the full Senate. But as with Tillerson, the nominees are expected to be confirmed. He said it was to safeguard the USA from terrorism.

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