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Posted at 10:46 PM ET, 12/12/2011

Obama ambassadorial nominees: Eisen clears Senate, but Aponte is blocked

The Senate voted 70-16 Monday evening to break a Republican hold on the nomination of Norman Eisen to be ambassador to the Czech Republic and then approved him on voice vote.
Recess appointee Mari Carmen Aponte’s confirmation as ambassador to El Salvadorremains stalled. (Luis Romero - AP)

But the White House and Senate Democrats failed to obtain the necessary 60 votes to break a GOP filibuster on the confirmation of Mari Carmen Aponte to be ambassador to El Salvador.

Both Eisen and Aponte had been serving in their posts after receiving recess appointees from President Obama. As a result of the Senate’s action, Eisen will be able to remain in Prague but Aponte’s appointment in San Salvador will expire at the end of this year.

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) said Monday that he objected to Eisen’s appointment because Eisen had not been forthcoming about the circumstances surrounding his role in the White House’s firing of Gerald Walpin , who had been inspector general of the Corporation for National and Community Service.

GOP Sen. Jim DeMint (S.C.), opposed Aponte’s nomination because of her past relationship with a Cuban man who allegedly had ties to Cuban intelligence.

By  |  10:46 PM ET, 12/12/2011

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