Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Please, More Reporting Like This (Judges ed.)

Fascinating parenthetical in Emily Heil's story about judicial vacancies:
Some vacancies have remained without nominees because home-state senators have yet to make recommendations to the White House to begin with — and in states with two GOP senators, that means they can delay the process there. (However, we hear that President Obama has sufficiently badgered at least Democratic senators to start providing names of judges, and observers are expecting a “raft” of new names from the White House soon.)
First, it's good reporting to note the Senate's role in the delays in judicial nominations at the very beginning of the process.

But what's this about Democratic Senators? We know (or at least we think we know) that Republican Senators have been slow-walking nominations in their states, but the general sense I've had is that the delays in Democratic states have been the administration's fault. Here, it's posed as the fault of Democratic Senators -- at least recently. Is that true?

One way to look at it is that it's fair to blame Obama up to the point that he makes it clear that he's doing whatever he can; that is, if he hasn't been "sufficiently badgering" in public, we know he hasn't done everything he can do. But overall, it's hard to tell! So, good reporting here, but more, please.

Oh - and that "raft" of new names? Seems like we've been hearing that all year, which makes me more inclined to think that the whole paragraph is mainly WH spin. Of course, we eventually did get the three DC Circuit picks, so you never know.

2 comments:

  1. There are at least 18 nominations which should not pose a problem for Obama (8 to Federal Courts of Appeal and 10 for District Courts in States with 2 democratic Senators).
    If you check the website for judicial vacancies, you can see that the guiltiest Senators who seem not to be proposing nominees are the ones from Pennsylvania (5 vacancies without nomination) Texas (6) Kentucky (3), Michigan (4), Arizona (4), California (4) and Georgia (3). Mostly, but not all have two Republican Senators. The delays in California and Michigan are absolutely baffling, in particular.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for looking into this!

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