Judicial Blockade Continues

Democrats announced yesterday that they will filibuster the nomination of Texas Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Owen to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. Tom Daschle said that “her record is so egregious that we have no choice but to filibuster;” no hint as to what that egregious record might be.
Another nominee, Jeffrey S. Sutton of Ohio, was confirmed to the 6th Circuit yesterday, on a nearly party-line vote, with only two Democrats voting for confirmation. While nothing the Senate does is (or should be) entirely free from politics, for two hundred years the judicial confirmation process was perceived as being mostly about the nominees’ professional qualifications. The Democrats have now abandoned all pretense that the process is about anything other than political warfare.
Next month will mark the second anniversay of the nominations of Miguel Estrada, Priscilla Owen and nine other judicial candidates. Five of the eleven have still not received votes.


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