This is unfair:
Barack Obama boasted at Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate that, thanks to his work in the Senate, the public can find out which special interest lobbyists are raising money for candidates.
In fact, the public cannot — also as a result of Obama’s work in the Senate.
He led a partisan confirmation battle that crippled the agency charged with implementing the new law requiring candidates to disclose lobbyists who collect big checks for candidates — a process known as “bundling.”
What he did was block Hans Von Spakovsky’s confirmation to the FEC:
But the commission lacks the votes necessary to take any official actions, including implementing — let alone enforcing — the law, rendering it effectively moot. That’s because Senate Democrats, led by Obama, blocked the confirmation of four nominees to the six-seat agency, leaving it without a quorum.
Obama and Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) technically put a hold on the Senate confirmation of only one nominee: Hans von Spakovsky. He has been accused of diluting minority voting power during an earlier stint as a Justice Department lawyer.
But Senate Republicans demanded that all four nominees (two Democrats, two Republicans) be voted on as a group — the way confirmations have traditionally gone for the commission, which by statute consists of three appointees from each party.
It was the GOP, not Obama, who kept the FEC from having a quorum. It is their obstructionism, not his, that led to its "crippling."
But yes, I suppose you could fairly call it a "partisan" battle. The Republicans certainly weren’t lining up to oppose Von Spakovsky.