Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, revealed Tuesday that he has offered to stop blocking approval of some of President Joe Biden’s ambassador nominees if there is a vote on Nord Stream 2 pipeline sanctions, The Hill reported.
Cruz said he had made the offer to Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and had also spoken with Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
“I have an offer on the table,” Cruz said. “It’s in Schumer’s hands.”
The Hill noted that confirmation of most of Biden’s State Department nominees have been on hold.
Cruz has vowed to block the picks until Biden imposes congressionally mandated sanctions on the pipeline, which was constructed to permit Russia to deliver natural gas to Germany, The Hill said.
Cruz had told CNN that his blockade is an effort to force the administration to “impose the sanctions on Nord Stream 2 that are required by federal law,” and not due to any objections to the nominees themselves.
Multiple Republicans in the Senate have shown their support for ending Cruz’s blockade, but only a few have suggested changing the rules on voting for nominees.
As of Friday, of the 54 nominees for ambassador posts, only nine have been confirmed for their positions. Many of those confirmed have longstanding ties to the Senate, such as former Sens. Jeff Flake, now ambassador to Turkey; Ken Salazar, now ambassador to Mexico; and Tom Udall, now ambassador to New Zealand.
Meanwhile, The Hill said Schumer has made a counteroffer to Cruz, but he declined to reveal what it is.