October 16, 2017

Feinstein: Democrats Vetting Trump Nominees, No Obstruction

Washington—Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement in response to false claims by President Trump and McConnell that Democrats are obstructing judicial nominees and suggestions that the blue-slip, which requires both home-state senators to sign off on judicial nominees, should be eliminated:

“Republican obstruction of President Obama’s nominees left more than 100 judicial vacancies on our federal courts. President Trump and Leader McConnell are correct that the Republican effort to remake the federal judiciary and outsource the selection of nominees to right-wing groups like the Judicial Crisis Network is not getting the attention it deserves.

“Democrats are doing their due diligence in vetting the president’s nominees. There’s been no obstruction that justifies the effort to end the 100-year-old blue-slip process. Here are the facts:

  • Seven Democratic senators have returned blue slips for circuit court nominees. More than half of the circuit court nominees who have had hearings in the Judiciary Committee this year have had blue slips from Democratic senators.
  • President Obama’s first four circuit court nominees waited an average of 213 days from nomination to confirmation. President Trump’s first four circuit court nominees waited an average of just 84 daysfrom nomination to confirmation.
  • President Obama had just three judicial nominees confirmed by this time in 2009. President Trump has had seven judicial nominees confirmed at this same point in his first year.

“Republicans appear to believe they can compensate for their stalled legislative agenda by attacking Democrats with false claims about judicial nominations.”

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