Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Clueless At the White House: Snowed By Pickler on Stickler

The "big" news for many Confined Space readers last week was the Senate's rejection of Richard Stickler to head the Mine Safety and Health Administration. Stickler had faced strong opposition from labor and Senate Democrats like West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd. On the last day of the session, the Senate voted to send Stickler's nomination back to the White House, leaving the President with the the choice of resubmitting Stickler's name, nominating someone else, or making a recess appointment of Stickler while Congress is out of session.

How significant Stickler's rejection is to the White House was revealed in yesterday's Press Conference with White House Press Secretary Tony Snow. Asked by AP Correspondent Nedra Pickler if the President was going to do a recess appointment of Stickler, Snow replied:
You have to let know earlier on ones like that, Nedra. I'll go back and work the phones. I have no earthly clue.
Well, gosh Tony, that was obvious when the President nominated him in the first place.