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Holding Up Nominations for a Good Cause?: Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Mont.) has put a hold on all civilian nominations emanating from the Defense Department, until DOD gets off its duff and improves the ability of overseas military members to cast their votes for November elections, reports the Associated Press news service. (Yes, he is up for re-election.) We do not know if this extends to Air Force nominations, but one of the service’s nominees—Anita Blair up for Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Manpower and Reserve Affairs—who faced the Senate Armed Services Committee July 18 is still awaiting word on her confirmation. Sue Payton at the same July 18 hearing was confirmed for Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition—a much-more contentious position—on July 21.