A study by The Heritage Foundation suggests President Donald J. Trump’s Federal Court nominees have faced more opposition in the Senate than in any other time in American History.
Senator Mitch McConnell (R- KY) complained last week that the generally non-controversial Judicial nominating process has been politicized by Senate Democrats in their quest to obstruct the Trump administration.
McConnell said that historically appointment to lower courts would occur in groups in an almost pro forma way, freeing up Senators to focus on lawmaking. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), however has changed this norm by using every parliamentary option open to him to delay these votes, namely holding cloture votes and insisting on roll call votes for every single nominee.
Schumer is still annoyed that McConnell refused to hold a vote on Merrick Garland, President Obama’s choice to fill the Supreme Court seat held by Justice John Scalia until Scalia’s death in 2012. Schumer felt that McConnell was protecting the position in case Hillary Clinton lost the Presidential election to Trump.
Statistics proving the Democrats’ blatant actions were published in the Heritage Foundation’s study, which looked at the “no” votes cast for federal judicial appointees.
It found that 71% of Trump’s nominees to the U.S. District Court, U.S. Circuit Court and the Supreme Court received at least one “no” vote. This is compared to only 6% of nominees from George Washington through Obama receiving at least one “no” vote. In fact, judges are usually confirmed unanimously.
Overall more than 25% of Senators cast no votes on 80% of individuals nominated for the positions on the U.S. Court of Appeals, compared to only 10% of Obama’s picks receiving “no” votes.
Many feel Senate Democrats are abrogating their singular responsibility of confirming federal judges by concentrating more on judicial nominees’ personal and political beliefs rather than on their qualifications.
Case in point, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals candidate Amy Coney Barrett was criticized by Senator Diane Feinstein (D-NY) during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee in 2017 when Feinstein suggested that Coney Barrett’s Catholic “dogma lives loud within you and that is a concern.”
Coney Barrett was confirmed by the full Senate by a 51- 47 vote.
One can only imagine what would have happened if a Republican Senator had suggested to a Muslim candidate that their “dogma” might influence their judicial opinions and that their faith was a “concern.”
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