Third time the charm for Commerce secretary

The Senate Commerce Committee today voted unanimously in favor of Gary Locke’s nomination for Commerce Secretary, sending the matter to the full Senate, where he is expected to clear easily.

In his confirmation hearing on Wednesday, Locke [spoke](/government/article.php/3811086/Locke+Clears+Questions+on+Security+Broadband.htm) in wide generalities about the importance of broadband and government transparency in response to the softballs lobbed at him by the approving senators.

The Obama administration hasn’t had an easy time filling this spot. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson stepped aside amid allegations of corruption surrounding his office. Then Republican Senator Judd Gregg bowed out over irreconcilable differences with Obama in the economy. (It became apparent that Gregg’s nomination was in doubt when he abstained from the vote on the president’s stimulus package.)

But in Locke, it looks like they’ve found their man.

“Hey, he pays his taxes,” one Republican staffer told What’s not to like?

Commerce Committee Chairman John Rockefeller, D-W.V., urged the full Senate to move quickly to confirm Locke.

“The American people deserve to know that the person working with Congress and this committee every day, to determine the best way to reboot this economy, is a person who — simply put — gets it,” he said in a statement.

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