Sen. Cantwell Lifts Block on Obama Appointee

By Chris Kissel May 15, 2009

It's safe to say Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) isn't exactly bff's with Obama's bailout team--among other things, she opposed the bailout renewal in January and she grilled Tim Geithner with a sense of vindication when the government announced they were sending more money to AIG.

Cantwell, along with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), has also been a thorn in their side for the last few months by blocking the Obama Administration's nomination of Gary Gensler as the head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Cantwell and Sanders maintained that they were concerned about Gensler's role in deregulating the credit market earlier in the decade.

Yesterday, both Cantwell and Sanders announced they were lifting the hold after meetings with the President and after Obama announced his support for a bill that would increase regulation of the financial markets.

"I continue to have concerns about Mr. Gensler's appointment," said Cantwell in a statement.. "But in light of the administration's significant and potentially historic stand on new controls over derivatives markets, I am prepared to lift the hold on his confirmation and focus on ensuring that the legislation we pass gets the job done."

Gensler is expected to be confirmed quickly now that the holds have been lifted.

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