Adelstein in limbo

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Federal Communications Commission nominee Jonathan Adelstein's chances of
winning confirmation this year have dimmed considerably following the Senate's
adjournment for election campaigning last week.

Congress plans to return for a lame-duck session Nov. 12, but lawmakers aim
to keep the session short and are expected to clear little time for anything
beyond Iraq and brokering a government-funding deal to keep the lights on.

As a result, Adelstein stands little chance of taking his seat before February. Some optimists held out hope for a package of nominations, which
presumably would include Adelstein, but that would require Majority Leader Tom
Daschle (D-S.D.) and GOP counterpart Trent Lott (R-Miss.) to divert attention from higher
priorities.

As retaliation for Democratic defeats of White House judicial nominations,
Lott has blocked confirmation of Adelstein, a Daschle aide.

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