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Judicial Voterama: Grasz confirmed (8th Cir.), Willett advances to floor vote (5th Cir.)

Judicial Voterama: Grasz confirmed (8th Cir.), Willett advances to floor vote (5th Cir.)

Meanwhile: Talley offers to withdraw (Alabama District Court)

The “judge story” that Trump crowed about in October continues apace.

Tonight the Senate confirmed Leonard Steven Grasz, by a 50–48 vote, to be a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eight Circuit.  Grasz had received a unanimous “Not Qualified” rating from the American Bar Association, an influential legal organization that publicly rates the qualifications of prospective federal judges. Republicans have criticized it as a left-leaning advocacy group, and the Trump White House does not give it veto power over nominees—as President Obama largely did.

It also invoked cloture on Don Willett’s nomination to the Fifth Circuit, also by a vote of 50–48. Every Democrat voted against both nominees.

It’s worth noting, however, that Willett received a unanimous “Well Qualified” rating—the highest possible score—and still didn’t pick up any Democratic support.

The cycle continues. Democrats obstruct Reagan’s nominees, so Republican’s obstructed Clinton’s nominees, so Democrat’s obstructed Bush nominees, so Republicans obstructed Garland, so the Democrats obstruct Trump’s nominees, so the Republicans will obstruct the next Democrat’s nominees, ad infinitum. 

At the same time, it appears that one of President Trump’s most controversial nominees, Brett J. Talley, is withdrawing his nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. He had come under fire because of his age and penchant for writing inflammatory comments on the Internet. He too had received a unanimous “Not Qualified” from the ABA, and CNN reported today that Chuck Grassley asked the White House to reconsider the nomination.



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I don’t care for the moral equivalency tone of this article. Dems nominate activist judges who will legislate from the bench; Republicans nominate judges who will adhere to the Constitution as written.

    Jared Samilow in reply to snopercod. | December 13, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    I wasn’t referring to the types of judges being selected. I was just saying that the game of “who started it?” in terms of judicial nominee obstruction is somewhat hard to identify and self-perpetuating.