Attorney general nominee vote likely this week: U.S. senator

Loretta Lynch testifies during her Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing to become U.S. attorney general on Capitol Hill in Washington January 28, 2015. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A vote on the stalled Senate confirmation of the nominee to be the next U.S. attorney general, Loretta Lynch, could take place in the next two to three days, a senior Republican senator said on Sunday.

"My sense is, over the next 48 to 72 hours, that is going to be resolved, and we will move on to this Iran issue," Senator Bob Corker, head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said on CNN's "State of the Union" program.

He added that there now were an education bill and trade promotion agreements, in addition to Iran legislation, due for a vote on the Senate floor and that as a result, "this logjam ... will be worked out."

Lynch's confirmation has been pending since she was nominated by President Barack Obama last November to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder. On Friday, Obama slammed the Senate's delay in approving Lynch, calling it embarrassing.

For the past month, Republicans who control the Senate have delayed a confirmation vote until Senate Democrats end a filibuster, or blocking tactic, against an unrelated bill designed to protect victims of human trafficking.

Senate Democrats balked at a provision inserted in the bill by Republicans that would bar any compensation paid by convicted sex traffickers into a victim fund from being used for abortions, except in limited cases.

Republican Senator Mike Lee, who sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee and voted against Lynch when the committee endorsed her nomination in February, was less specific than Corker about the timing of a vote on her nomination.

"I think there will be a vote soon, within the next few weeks," he told NBC's "Meet the Press" program.

(Reporting by Lindsay Dunsmuir; Editing by Frances Kerry)