Over the weekend, I urged readers to ask Republican Senators to block the nomination of Caitlin Halligan to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. I argued (1) that Halligan’s leftist views — e.g., regarding guns and national security — are outside of the mainstream and (2) that she did not testify candidly during her confirmation hearing.
Lindsey Graham was foremost among the Senators I urged readers to contact. Graham isn’t big on filibustering judicial nominees, which is not an unreasonable position. But as a member of the old “Gang of 14,” he supported filibusters under “extraordnary circumstances.” Applying that standard, he helped block at least one key Bush nominee.
Halligan’s far-leftism and lack of candor before Congress should satisfy the extraordinary circumstances standard. Indeed, Graham stood with his fellow Republican Senators in 2011 when the Senate refused to proceed on her nomination.
Where does Graham stand on Halligan now? There has been speculation that Chuck Schumer is pressuring the Republican Senators he’s working with on immigration reform — Graham, John McCain, Marco Rubio, and Jeff Flake — to relent on Halligan in exchange for some sort of a fine-tuning of the deal they are concocting on immigration.
Now there are reports that Graham will not support the blocking of Halligan. On the other hand, I’ve been told that Graham has announced no decision regarding the nominee.
We’ll soon find out for sure where Graham stands on Halligan. Let’s hope that he will not deal conservatives a double blow by paving the way for an ultra-liberal judge in the interest of paving the way for citizenship for illegal immigrants.