With the end of Congress' 2009 term, all pending nominations were returned to the President as a matter of standard procedure. Now, eight of those nominations are once again set to be in the Senate's hands.
Steve Benen writes:
Sam Stein reported that seven judicial and political appointees will be re-nominated by the president, including Dawn Johnsen, who was nominated in March to head the Office of Legal Counsel, but who can't get a floor vote, in part because conservatives disapprove of her opposition to Bush-era torture memos.
The re-nominations can't formally happen until the Senate returns on Jan. 20[.]
Of course, if the president really wanted to shake things up, he could use recess appointments and highlight their necessity in the face of a dysfunctional Senate process....
On a related note, ACS guest blogger Derek Duarte recently published "The Abuse of the Filibuster" on ACSblog here.