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On Monday, Mr. Reid said Mr. Jaczko’s replacement will need to “share his commitment to protecting the safety of the American people over the interests of a single industry.”

Mr. Reid also has harshly criticized Ms. Svinicki, the commissioner awaiting reconfirmation. He has accused her of lying to Congress during his first confirmation hearings about whether she worked on the Yucca Mountain nuclear storage project — a matter that is bound to come up at her new confirmation hearings this time around.