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« Chevron, Consulting Firm Battle In D.C. Circuit Over Documents | Main | Senate Confirms Thacker as New Federal Appeals Judge »

April 17, 2012



Bush recess appointed Charles Pickering, However, he was never confirmed by the full senate and withdrew his nomination as the recess appt was about to end..

Another thing to consider is Senator Leahy won't have hearings for Obama nominees who aren't supported by their home state senators...This has ended several of Obama's Circuit and District Court nominations....Flashback to President Bush, who refused to withdraw Janice Brown's nomination, arguably his most controversial nominee, EVEN though both CA senators didn't support her...She ended up being confirmed anyway..The rules seem to be different for Democratic and Republican presidents..


Comparisons between Geo. W. Bush judicial appointees and President Obama's judicial appointees would be more meaningful if someone provided details on how many controversial recess appointments President Bush made. Otherwise it's apples to oranges,not merely tit for tat. How's that for mixed metaphors. . . .

Larry Harris

In all the back and forth re: who shot John something is being lost: the damage to the judiciary and the burden on the individual judges. Sure the D's sometimes held up nominations. Does that mean the R's have to do the same on steroids, just to get even?


1. Caitlin Halligan's filibuster means President Obama will not have (barring a miracle) a DC Circuit court confirmation in his first term, first president in 50 yrs. to not have confirmation to that very high profile court...There are 3 openings on that circuit..

2. Also, Obama's District Court nominees are facing a tougher burden than has ever been seen...Several have recieved more than 35 NO votes, and for John J McConnell, Senator Reid had to file cloture to get him thru..President Bush had 261 District Court judges confirmed, only 4 had NO votes..And Bush had 10 judges confirmed on 9/26/08, which was in the heart of an election year...It will be very interesting to see how many (if any) Obama nominees get confirmed after July 1...

Ed Whelan

Time for some perspective:

1. In 2003 alone, Senate Democrats defeated 19 cloture petitions on nine of Bush’s appellate nominees. In total, there were more than 800 Democratic votes against cloture. In 2011, Senate Republicans defeated two cloture petitions, one (with Democrat Ben Nelson joining them) on the nomination of Goodwin Liu, one on the nomination of Caitlin Halligan. The total number of Republican votes against cloture was 87.

2. Here is a list of Bush 43 district-court nominees who (with the exception of the one nominee noted below who received one negative vote) were confirmed unanimously or by voice vote after delays of 300 days or more:

Thomas Ludington 1,365 days
James C. Dever III 1,072 days
Peter Sheridan 946 days
Robert J. Conrad, Jr. 731 days
Sean F. Cox 636 days
Thomas D. Schroeder 441 days
Roslynn R. Mauskopf 428 days
Vanessa L. Bryant 427 days
Dora L. Irizarry 423 days
Sandra Feuerstein 419 days
Roger T. Benitez 413 days (98-1)
Richard Holwell 412 days
James R. Hall 388 days
Robert J. Jonker 376 days
Paul L. Maloney 376 days
Curtis V. Gomez 362 days
William L. Osteen, Jr. 346 days
Martin K. Reidinger 346 days
Liam O’Grady 341 days
Sandra Townes 307 days

Senate Democrats are reaping what they have sowed.


Its absolutely true as even 99-0 nominees wait 6 months+ to get a final vote...And there have been 2 filiubusters (Liu, Halligan) within 6 months of Obama's Circuit Court nominees..

Democrats blocked some of Bush's nomineees but they also allowed confirmations of very controversial nominees, and non-controversial ones cruised thru confirmations...

Obama's Circuit Court nominees have been filibustered, denied a SJC hearing, and those that do manage to clear the SJC wait forever for a final senate vote..

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