President Barack Obama’s two nominees to the Federal Election Commission must wait a little longer for the Senate Rules and Administration Committee to vote on their nominations. Only Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., appeared at this morning’s scheduled meeting, announcing that the committee had failed to reach a quorum, and therefore, couldn’t conduct a vote. But Schumer, the committee’s chairman, added during brief remarks that a vote on the FEC nominees — Democrat Ann Ravel and Republican Lee Goodman — could come as “early as tomorrow.” Rules Committee staff explained that senators could conduct a vote on Goodman and Ravel without scheduling another formal meeting, instead gathering together during a break in action when the full Senate meets in session. The Rules Committee’s recommendation would be forwarded to the full Senate, which would conduct a final appointment vote.
Senators are largely preoccupied today with developments regarding Syria. Obama is scheduled to visit Capitol Hill today and meet personally with many senators.
Campaign finance reformer advocates have repeatedly criticized the election agency for gridlock under Obama’s watch, and many hope the new blood on the commission will bolster its willingness to act. In July, the Rules Committee conducted a largely uneventful confirmation hearing for Ravel and Goodman.