Sunday, May 27, 2018
Politics

PolitiFact: Senate approved Bush second-term nominees much faster than Obama's

The statement

Says Barack Obama is getting his nominees confirmed "faster than President (George W.) Bush was at the same time in his second term."

Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Senate minority leader, Sunday on Meet the Press

The ruling

Comity may have returned to the Senate with a deal that averted a showdown over confirmation of President Barack Obama's nominees, but beforehand, passions ran high.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., appeared on NBC's Meet the Press where he argued that the president's track record has been pretty good.

"What is the problem here? The president has had 1,540 of his nominations confirmed, only four defeated. He's not lost a single member of the Cabinet. He's getting them faster than President Bush was at the same time in his second term," McConnell said.

There are actually three claims in that statement. Here, we will look at the last one, "He's getting them faster than President (George W.) Bush was at the same time in his second term."

We contacted McConnell's office, and communications director Michael Brumas told us that the Senate had confirmed 28 judges, compared to 10 total by this same point in 2005.

Brumas has those numbers exactly right. The only problem is that McConnell on Meet the Press did not specify that he was talking about judges. We brought this up with Brumas, and he told us that McConnell has used the comparison between Obama and Bush a number of times to describe the pace of judicial nominations.

Again, that's accurate. We found that just a few days earlier, McConnell made the point on the Senate floor about judges.

However, he didn't say that during this interview. All he said was that Obama was "getting them faster than President Bush was at the same time in his second term." We looked at all nominations in the first year of the second terms of both presidents, up to July 14, the day McConnell was interviewed. With the guidance of Anne Joseph O'Connell, associate dean at the University of California-Berkeley Law, we searched the nominations database at the Library of Congress.

We found that the Senate has confirmed 68 of Obama's nominees. By this point in the 109th Congress, the Senate had confirmed 129 of Bush's nominees, nearly twice as many.

We rate the statement False.

Edited for print. Read the full version at PolitiFact.com.

Comments
Former President George H.W. Bush hospitalized in Maine

Former President George H.W. Bush hospitalized in Maine

BIDDEFORD, Maine — A spokesman for former President George H.W. Bush says the 93-year-old was experiencing low blood pressure and has been hospitalized. Spokesman Jim McGrath tweeted just after 2 p.m. Sunday that Bush will likely remain in the hospit...
Updated: 6 hours ago
More LGBT issues loom as justices near wedding cake decision

More LGBT issues loom as justices near wedding cake decision

WASHINGTON — A flood of lawsuits over LGBT rights is making its way through courts and will continue, no matter the outcome in the Supreme Court’s highly anticipated decision in the case of a Colorado baker who would not create a wedding cake for a s...
Published: 05/26/18
Carlton: Sometimes taxpayers pay for not doing the right thing

Carlton: Sometimes taxpayers pay for not doing the right thing

I may have cracked the code. Found a way to sell doing the right thing. Discovered a method of persuasion in certain matters of fairness, conscience and the greater good.Like giving our fellow Americans a second chance.When morality-based arguments d...
Published: 05/26/18
North Korea demolishes nuclear test site as journalists watch

North Korea demolishes nuclear test site as journalists watch

PUNGGYE-RI, North Korea — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made good on his promise to demolish his country’s nuclear test site, which was formally closed in a series of huge explosions Thursday as a group of foreign journalists looked on. The explosi...
Published: 05/24/18
Trump violated the Constitution when he blocked his critics on Twitter, a federal judge rules

Trump violated the Constitution when he blocked his critics on Twitter, a federal judge rules

President Donald Trump’s decision to block his Twitter followers for their political views is a violation of the First Amendment, a federal judge ruled Wednesday, saying that Trump’s effort to silence his critics is not permissible under the U.S. Con...
Published: 05/23/18
All those city services that fuel Lightning fever? Team, not taxpayers, foot the bill

All those city services that fuel Lightning fever? Team, not taxpayers, foot the bill

TAMPA — All those public watch parties during the Tampa Bay Lightning’s postseason run? And how about the rally at Joe Chillura Courthouse Square Park with the big white Lightning logo spray-painted on the grass? You need police to prote...
Published: 05/23/18
Romano: A pathetic legacy for Florida’s all-or-nothing Democrats

Romano: A pathetic legacy for Florida’s all-or-nothing Democrats

Explain this to me: In the world of partisan politics, how is being an independent thinker a bad thing? When it comes to general elections, we seem to like rogues and mavericks. We want outsiders and swamp scrubbers. Folks appreciate a good finger-...
Published: 05/22/18
‘World’s most expensive Witch Hunt’: Trump lashes out at New York Times, Democrats

‘World’s most expensive Witch Hunt’: Trump lashes out at New York Times, Democrats

WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump lashed out Sunday at "the World’s most expensive Witch Hunt," trashing a new report in the New York Times that said an emissary representing the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates offered help...
Published: 05/20/18
Obama’s education secretary: Let’s boycott school until gun laws change

Obama’s education secretary: Let’s boycott school until gun laws change

Former Education Secretary Arne Duncan pushed a radical idea on Twitter: Parents should pull their children out of school until elected officials pass stricter gun control laws.His tweet came hours after a shooting rampage at a Houston-area high scho...
Published: 05/20/18
China offers to buy more US products to reduce trade imbalance

China offers to buy more US products to reduce trade imbalance

WASHINGTON - China offered to boost its annual purchases of U.S. products by "at least $200 billion" Friday as two days of talks aimed at averting an open breach between the two countries ended in Washington, a top White House adviser said.Larry Kudl...
Published: 05/19/18