Senate Democrats step up pressure for vote on attorney general

By Lindsay Dunsmuir
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

By Lindsay Dunsmuir

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Senate Democrats on Thursday wrote a formal letter to Republicans urging them to hold a vote to confirm Loretta Lynch as the next U.S. attorney general.

There is still no date set by the Republican majority for a vote to be held on the Senate floor for Lynch's nomination, despite the Senate judiciary committee's endorsing her a week ago.

The nomination of Lynch, who is currently the U.S. attorney in Brooklyn, New York, to be the nation's top law enforcement official has been pending for 117 days, longer than any other attorney general in the last 30 years.

The letter, circulated by Democratic Senators Chuck Schumer and Patrick Leahy, urged the Republicans to schedule a floor vote as soon as possible.

"Although a narrow minority of the Senate may want to use Ms. Lynch's floor vote to protest the immigration enforcement priorities announced last year by the administration, there is simply no credible reason for further delay," said the letter, which was addressed to Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.  

(Reporting by Lindsay Dunsmuir; Editing by Leslie Adler)