Landrieu to block Lew nomination

Thursday - 9/23/2010, 6:52pm EDT

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) announced that she will block Jack Lew's nomination as director of the Office of Management and Budget.

This builds on Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announcement yesterday that he will vote against President Obama's nominee to succeed Peter Orszag, who left in July.

Lew, currently the State Department's deputy secretary for management and resources, has previously served as director of OMB from 1998-2001 under the Clinton administration. Lew has received praise from both sides of the aisle so far in his nomination hearings.

Landrieu has said that she will block the nomination until the moratorium on deepwater oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico has been lifted or reduced. The current six-month ban, which went in to effect in May, directly impacts jobs in Landrieu's state of Louisiana.

"Although Mr. Lew clearly possesses the expertise necessary to serve as one of the President's most important economic advisors, I found that he lacked sufficient concern for the host of economic challenges confronting the Gulf Coast," Landrieu wrote in a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Sanders has said that he feels that Lew will be unable to deal strongly with corporate interests and wealthy Americans.