The effort was organized by National Geographic Kids magazine in support of the first lady’s Let’s Move initiative to promote physical fitness and healthy eating for children.
Senate Republicans on Monday blocked President Obama’s nominee to be ambassador to El Salvador, drawing a sharp rebuke from the White House, which accused them of playing politics with the nation’s interests.
On a vote of 49-37, the Senate refused to move ahead with the nomination of Mari Carmen Aponte, a Washington lawyer and Hispanic activist. She has served as ambassador in San Salvador since September 2010 after the president, facing Republican opposition, made her a recess appointee. Her temporary tenure is to run out at the end of the year.
“Today’s filibuster is one more example of the type of political posturing and partisanship the American people are tired of seeing in Washington,” press secretary Jay Carney said.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, left open the possibility of trying to vote again at a later date.
Republican opposed Miss Aponte over unfounded rumors that her boyfriend of years ago was a Cuban spy and new conservative anger over a summertime Op-Ed column on gay rights to mark Mr. Obama’s proclamation. Democrats argued that she was an immensely qualified nominee who has accomplished a great deal in her short time in the diplomatic post.
• From wire dispatches and staff reports
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