Senate Republicans block top Interior nominee
Senate Republicans successfully blocked the confirmation of David J. Hayes as deputy secretary of the Interior Department.

Republicans put a hold on Hayes in protest of the Obama administration's energy policies. Democrats were unable to muster 60 votes to end debate.

"It may be uncomfortable for some to watch us have to clean up mess after mess — from corruption to law breaking — that is the previous administration's legacy at Interior," Interior Secretary Salazar said in a statement, The Denver Post reported.. "But to cast a vote against such a qualified and fine person is the height of cynicism."

Hayes is a former Clinton administration official who said he will make Indian issues a priority.

Get the Story:
GOP Senators Block Interior Nominee's Confirmation (The Washington Post 5/14)
Salazar seethes after blockade (The Denver Post 5/14)
Murkowski leads GOP in delaying Interior appointment (The Anchorage Daily News 5/14)

An Opinion:
Editorial: Despite setback, Salazar should not back down (The Denver Post 5/14)

Confirmation Hearing:
Full Committee Hearing: to consider the nomination of David Hayes to be Deputy Secretary of the Interior (March 12, 2009)
Note: Hearing starts about 22 minutes into the archived webcast.

Related Stories:
Senate Republicans plan to block DOI nominee (5/13)
Nominee for top Interior post faces hold in Senate (3/19)
Second Interior nominee goes before Senate (3/16)