Senate to vote on Loretta Lynch nomination Thursday

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Loretta Lynch testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee January 28, 2015 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

Mark Wilson, Getty Images

Loretta Lynch, President Obama's nominee to replace Attorney General Eric Holder, is likely to get a confirmation vote Thursday morning, 165 days after she was nominated for the post.

Lynch's path to confirmation has been unusually slow, even for the Senate. She testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in late January and received the panel's backing about a month later, on February 26. Since then, however, her nomination languished.

That finally came to an end Tuesday when Senate leaders announced they were ready to move forward on both Lynch's confirmation and a vote on a human trafficking bill that had gotten hung up over abortion-related language in the bill.

McConnell filed a procedural motion necessary to advance Lynch's nomination, setting up a vote for Thursday. It is likely that there will be no further objections to moving forward.

That's not to say she will get overwhelming support from both parties. A number of Republicans have objected to Lynch taking over as attorney general because she believes President Obama's recent move to defer deportation for up to five million illegal immigrants is legal.

"She will become the chief advocate for the president's policies as attorney general, and her testimony expressing support for the president's unconstitutional executive action, and for her support for a number of the president's other policies, make it impossible for me to vote for her nomination," Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, told Texas reporters in early February before voting against Lynch at the committee level.

Mr. Obama has grown increasingly vocal about the delay in Lynch's nomination vote, "embarrassing" and a "crazy situation."

"What we still have is this crazy situation where a woman who everybody agrees is qualified... has been now sitting there for longer than the previous seven attorney generals combined,"he said during a joint press conference with Matteo Renzi, Italy's prime minister, earlier this month. "And there's no reason for it. Nobody can describe a reason for it beyond political gamesmanship in the Senate.

"There are times where the dysfunction in the Senate just goes too far. This is an example of it. It's gone too far. Enough," the president continued. "This is embarrassing -- a process like this."

  • Rebecca Kaplan

    Rebecca Kaplan is a political reporter for