Obstructing Nominees:

For those who have forgotten that Republicans are just as capable of obstructing Presidential nominees as Democrats, consider the current "controversy" over the confirmation of Andrew von Eschenbach as Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. As the WSJ editorial page noted today (link for subscribers), two GOP Senators -- South Carolina's Jim DeMint and Louisiana's David Vitter -- have threatened to block von Eschenbach's confirmation unless they get their way on their pet issues, withdrawing RU-486 from the market and drug reimportation, respectively. According to the Journal: "This is an abuse of their 'advice and consent' powers under the Constitution and a danger to the health of Americans, who need a confirmed FDA Commissioner with full authority to manage that bureaucracy." That may be a bit hyperbolic, but the overall sentiment is correct: Von Eschenbach deserves a vote.