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Just Say No: An Analysis of Dems Opposing Trump Nominees

One senator has voted against more Trump nominees than any other (and it isn’t Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, or Chuck Schumer).

Kirsten Gillibrand 2020

Embittered by a GOP blockade against Obama nominees and emboldened by a so-called “Resistance” movement, Democrats have been opposing Trump nominees at a break-neck pace since January.

Unsurprisingly, the Democrats opposing the most Trump nominees are those who may wind up challenging Trump for the White House in 2020. In fact, the top five Democrats who have opposed the most Trump nominees are all in the 2020 mix.

Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) have each supported just 19 percent of Trump nominees. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) has supported 15 percent, while Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has backed 13 percent.

But the Democrat who has supported the fewest Trump nominees is Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), yet another potential 2020 contender.

Democrats Vote Against Trump Nominees

In other words, these Democrats are not opposing Trump nominees because they are not qualified; they’re opposing them because doing so could be beneficial to their electoral prospects in three years:

“It’s not a secret that more than a handful of Democratic senators believe they can be a better president than President Trump. But they’ll have to navigate a competitive primary first, and being known as the chief opponent of Trump could be an asset,” Gonzales told Roll Call.

With the level of attention the nominations were getting from liberal activists, Gonzales said, “confirmation votes could be one important measure of a candidate’s dedication to opposing the current president.”

Democrats representing states that Trump won in 2016 have used their opposition “more judiciously” than Democrats in deep blue states like New York, Massachusetts, or Oregon.