The Senate Judiciary Committee approved Thursday three judicial nominees for district courts in New York, California and Louisiana, as well as the nominee to become chairman of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board.
The committee unanimously voted to approve Nelson Roman to be a judge for the Southern District of New York and Shelly Dick for the Middle District of Louisiana. The other nominees had opposition from Republicans: William Orrick for the Northern District of California was approved 11-7, and David Medine for the privacy board was approved 10-8.
In opposing Orrick, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said that he had concerns about some of Orrick's views, particularly on immigration. Grassley, the ranking minority on the committee, also said that Orrick had provided "non-responsive" answers to some of Grassley's questions. "Mr. Orrick's non-responsiveness rises to a level well above what we typically see from nominees," Grassley said.
On Medine, Grassley said he has serious concerns with views on foreign nationals coming to the country from high-risk countries.
"Specifically, Mr. Medine views that it would be 'inappropriate' for the federal government to profile foreign nationals from high-risk countries based solely upon the country of origin," Grassley said. "All of the other members of the board correctly stated at their hearing that foreign nationals do not have the same constitutional or statutory rights as U.S. persons and the government may, lawfully and appropriately, use country of origin as a limiting factor for purposes of admission to the United States."