Judd Gregg, the New Hampshire Republican Senator, has withdrawn his name for consideration as the Obama Adminisration Commerce Secretary.
Gregg said he had not fully agreed to the Obama White House plan to move the U.S. Census from the Commerce Department to the White House.
Gregg also did not support the stimulus.
Gregg gave a statement to reporters for TV cameras and said the president was very gracious throught this process….
Census, White House and Judd Gregg
Here is Judd Gregg’s statement:
Sen. Gregg stated, “I want to thank the President for nominating me to serve in his Cabinet as Secretary of Commerce. This was a great honor, and I had felt that I could bring some views and ideas that would assist him in governing during this difficult time. I especially admire his willingness to reach across the aisle.
“However, it has become apparent during this process that this will not work for me as I have found that on issues such as the stimulus package and the Census there are irresolvable conflicts for me. Prior to accepting this post, we had discussed these and other potential differences, but unfortunately we did not adequately focus on these concerns. We are functioning from a different set of views on many critical items of policy.
“Obviously the President requires a team that is fully supportive of all his initiatives.
“I greatly admire President Obama and know our country will benefit from his leadership, but at this time I must withdraw my name from consideration for this position.
“As we move forward, I expect there will be many issues and initiatives where I can and will work to assure the success of the President’s proposals. This will certainly be a goal of mine.
“Kathy and I also want to specifically thank Governor Lynch and Bonnie Newman for their friendship and assistance during this period. In addition we wish to thank all the people, especially in New Hampshire, who have been so kind and generous in their supportive comments.
“As a further matter of clarification, nothing about the vetting process played any role in this decision. I will continue to represent the people of New Hampshire in the United States Senate.”
This is the second Obama Commerce nominee to drop out. Bill Richardson withdrew his name because of a grand jury investigation in his state house….
In this Feb. 3, 2009 file photo, then-Commerce Secretary-designate Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., speaks in the Grand Foyer of the White House in Washington. Gregg has withdrawn his nomination to become President Barack Obama’s commerce secretary.(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)
The Associated Press said:
Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire abruptly withdrew his nomination as commerce secretary Thursday, citing “irresolvable conflicts” with President Barack Obama‘s handling of the economic stimulus and 2010 census.
“We are functioning from a different set of views on many critical items of policy,” Gregg said in a statement released by his Senate office.
Gregg, 61, is a former New Hampshire governor who previously served in the House. He has been in the Senate since 1993 and currently serves as the top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, where he is known as a crusader against big spending.
He was Obama’s second choice to fill the Commerce portfolio.
New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson withdrew several weeks ago in the wake of a grand jury investigation into alleged wrongdoing involving state contracts. He has not been implicated personally.
In his statement, Gregg thanked Obama for the nomination, and said, “I especially admire his willingness to reach across the aisle.”
In citing the stimulus and census, he said, “Prior to accepting this post, we had discussed these and other potential differences, but unfortunately we did not adequately focus on these concerns. We are functioning from a different set of views on many critical items of policy.”
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Over the span of just three months, Bill Richardson has gone from being on the shortlist for secretary of state to late-night punch line, a breathtaking descent that has tarnished his once-sparkling career.
Since withdrawing as the nominee for secretary of commerce in early January amid questions surrounding a federal grand jury investigation, New Mexico’s Democratic governor has seen his political fortunes crater. Once unmatched in his power and popularity in Santa Fe, Richardson’s grip on state politics has been weakened by the whiff of scandal, and home state opponents have been emboldened by his plummeting approval ratings — numbers that have dropped below 50 percent, according to a recent SurveyUSA poll.
“He’s had a pretty rough go of it since he withdrew,” said Timothy Jennings, a Democrat and New Mexico’s Senate president pro tempore. “His popularity has really declined in the state.”
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