The chairman of the U.S. Republican Party's National Committee is calling on the Justice Department to investigate White House dealmaking in recent Senate elections.

In the party's weekly address Saturday, Michael Steele said a special investigator should look into White House efforts to dissuade two politicians from seeking Senate seats.  Steele said U.S. President Barack Obama has failed to meet his promise to run an open administration.

The White House last month acknowledged it had discussed with U.S. Congressman Joe Sestak a possible job in the Obama administration, on the condition that he drop out of the contest to be Pennsylvania's Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate.  Former U.S. President Bill Clinton contacted Sestak on behalf of the Obama administration, but Sestak remained in the race and last month he won the nomination.

On Thursday, the White House acknowledged it had discussed possible jobs with another politician in hopes he would not seek a Senate seat.  Mr. Obama's deputy chief of staff, Jim Messina, tried to dissuade Andrew Romanoff from seeking the Democratic nomination to be one of Colorado's U.S. senators.  Romanoff has remained in the race, which is scheduled for August, and both he and the White House say he did not receive an actual job offer.

The White House says it broke no laws in any of the exchanges.