- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham signaled Wednesday President Trump’s pick to lead the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives might be in trouble.

The president earlier this year nominated National Fraternal Order of Police President Chuck Canterbury to head the embattled bureau. But after a contentious July confirmation hearing, Mr. Canterbury’s nomination has been languishing.

Mr. Graham, South Carolina Republican, hinted Wednesday the administration may ultimately withdraw Mr. Canterbury’s nomination.

“I’ll have that up to them, but I think that one will be a problem,” Mr. Graham said when asked by The Hill if the White House would retract the nomination.

Mr. Graham also told the outlet Mr. Canterbury’s confirmation vote is “going to be very problematic.”

The nomination was on the committee’s agenda just before it broke for a two-week recess earlier this month. But since the recess ended, Mr. Canterbury has disappeared from the committee’s vote schedule.

Mr. Canterbury frustrated senators of both parties during his confirmation hearing this summer. Senators repeatedly pressed him for his opinions on the major gun-rights debates facing the country, but Mr. Canterbury demurred saying he could not stray from the FOP’s official positions.

Two Republican Senators, Mike Lee of Utah, and John Kennedy of Louisiana said the dodging could cost their votes.

“I like straight answers, and you are being evasive,” Mr. Kennedy said at the time. “You have been nominated to run ATF. I think every member of this panel, both my Democratic friends and Republican friends who have feelings about the Second Amendment, are entitled to know both morally and legally what you believe.”

Republicans hold a 12-10 majority on the committee so unless Democrats are willing to crossover to support Mr. Canterbury — an unlikely scenario — he does not have enough votes to clear the committee.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide