Senate leaders have come to an agreement to consider 10 judicial nominees during the next several weeks, stepping up the rate that senators have been considering judges in recent months.
The nominees include Judge Henry Floyd for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit and two picks for the high-profile U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Katherine Forrest and Alison Nathan. Also in the group is Jennifer Zipps, a federal magistrate who would succeed the late U.S. District Judge John Roll after his death in the January shooting at a Tucson, Ariz., grocery store.
The 10 are among 27 judicial nominees who have won the backing of the Senate Judiciary Committee and are waiting for final votes in the Senate. The White House and liberal legal groups have been pressuring the Senate to act, noting the historically high vacancy rate on the federal bench. This year, the Senate has been considering about four nominees a month.
When senators return to Washington on Monday from a week-long recess, they are set to consider Floyd, Zipps and district court nominees Nannette Brown for the Eastern District of Louisiana, Nancy Torresen for the District of Maine, William Kuntz II for the Eastern District of New York and Marina Marmolejo for the Southern District of Texas.
And then, as soon as Oct. 11, senators have agreed to consider four more district court nominees: Nathan, a former associate counsel in the Obama White House; Forrest, a former Cravath, Swaine & Moore partner who’s in the Justice Department’s Antitrust Section; Jane Triche-Milazzo for the Eastern District of Louisiana; and Susan Hickey for the Western District of Arkansas.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) announced the agreement late on Monday.