Sen. Jeff Merkley released the following statement Thursday after Republican senators filibustered the nomination of Mel Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency and Patricia Millett to serve on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals:

“Senate Republicans just blocked up-or-down votes on a judicial nominee and an executive nominee back to back, within minutes of each other. This is a war on the other two branches of government and their ability to do the jobs the American people need them to do. The Senate rules must change.”