WASHINGTON, June 14 (UPI) -- Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., has placed a hold on some of President Bush's executive branch nominations in a game of nominee chicken with Republicans.
The move to delay all non-defense, non-judicial nominees is an attempt to pressure GOP leaders to move to appoint his former aide and physicist, Greg Jaczko, to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
It is the latest problem in a long running fight over Bush nominees to Senate approved posts in his administration.
Nominated in February by Bush for a Democratic spot on the five-member commission, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee has not yet cleared Jaczko's nomination, due at least partially to some to intense opposition to him from nuclear power concerns.
The delay over Jaczko also follows the withdrawal of a Republican nominee for the commission, retired Navy Vice Adm. John Grossenbacher, in April after his nomination had been stalled for seven months by Senate Democrats.
Committee Chairman James Inhofe, R-Okla., has said the Jaczko nomination will not move until it can be paired with a Republican nominee for the other open spot on the commission.