Now, though, another Republican senator is blocking the process.
Cass Sunstein, Obama's choice to lead the Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (hence the shorter "regulatory czar" moniker), had to all but sacrifice a dog at the altar of animal agribusiness recently to convince them he wasn't going to push for animal rights in his new position.
Since Sunstein's nomination in January, the deceptively named Center for Consumer Freedom has tried to derail his confirmation by labeling him a "radical animal rights activist." Ironically animal rights activists consider him more animal welfare.
In a 2002 paper Sunstein called for "extensive regulation of the use of animals in entertainment, scientific experiments, and agriculture."
Sunstein has had to meet with agriculture groups and senators from Big Ag states to ease their concerns over government interference in their exploitation.
Steve Kopperud, who represents two of the groups in the Farm Animal Welfare Coalition, said that at a meeting with those groups, "Dr. Sunstein addressed all of our concerns to our satisfaction, and we asked that he convey those assurances to Chambliss in writing, which he has done."Chambliss lifted his hold, but now Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, a hunting advocate, has stepped into Sunstein's path. Despite the nominee's written correspondence to Chambliss, Cornyn is still concerned and wants to speak to Sunstein.
"Sen. Cornyn finds numerous aspects of Mr. Sunstein's record troubling, specifically the fact that he wants to establish legal 'rights' for livestock, wildlife and pets, which would enable animals to file lawsuits in American courts," the Republican's spokesman, Kevin McLaughlin, said in a statement to FOXNews.com.However, Sunstein had alleviated Chambliss' concerns on that front.
Chambliss said he was dropping his hold because Sunstein had convinced him that he "would not take any steps to promote litigation on behalf of animals," and that he believes the "Second Amendment creates an individual right to possess guns for purposes of both hunting and self defense."(Photo of Cass Sunstein courtesy of aejmc.org.)