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Lower Federal Courts

GOP Obstruction Against Judges Reaches New Low

Press Release
Drew Courtney or Miranda Blue
People For the American Way
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Last night, the Senate GOP refused to confirm numerous judicial nominees who have been waiting months for up-or-down votes, including several who were approved unanimously by the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The Senate confirmed four judges, and agreed to move forward on one more, but refused to act on seventeen more nominees, nine of whom were approved by voice vote or unanimous roll-call vote.

“The level of obstruction being displayed by the GOP is jaw dropping,” said Marge Baker, Executive Vice President at People For the American Way.  “It’s clear that Republican Senators are intent on grinding judicial nominations to a halt.  Throughout the Bush Administration, Republicans stacked the Courts with judges willing to twist the law to favor corporate interests over the rights of individual Americans.  Now, Republican Senators don’t want to confirm judges who will stand up for the law.”

In addition to refusing to vote on judges, the GOP sent several nominations back to the White House, requiring that they be re-nominated by the President and re-approved by the committee.  Although the process can’t block confirmation of nominees, it does eat up weeks of time.

“Make no mistake,” said Baker, “Republicans are playing politics with our system of justice.  By dragging their feet on nominees, Senator McConnell and his party are doing serious harm to our country.  This obstruction is unprecedented and unacceptable.  Rarely has ‘the party of no’ done more to deserve its name.”