- The Washington Times - Monday, July 21, 2014

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid accused Republicans Monday of holding up President Obama’s pick to serve on the global aviation board that is investigating the shocking crash of a Malaysian Airlines passenger flight over eastern Ukraine.

The Nevada Democrat said Michael A. Lawson has been awaiting for months to be confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the U.N.’s International Civil Aviation Organization amid questions about his prior fundraising for President Obama.

A vote scheduled for late Monday is a long time coming, he added, in light of the “terrible tragedy” in which 298 civilians were killed when Malaysia Airlines MH17 was shot down over Russian separatist-held territory in Ukraine.

“It’s really untoward that this is happening,” the Nevada Democrat said. “They’re holding up these nominations out of spite, and it’s too bad, and this is a perfect example.”

President Obama said Monday the evidence points to Russia-backed separatists as the culprits for the flight’s crash, although Moscow has denied any involved and the separatists have pointed the finger at their Ukrainian enemies.