02.28.12

Leahy Urges Senate Action On Long-Delayed Judicial Nominations

WASHINGTON (Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012) – Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is urging Senate Republicans to consent to considering more than a dozen judicial nominations reported by the Judiciary Committee in 2011 that have yet to receive a confirmation vote in the Senate. 

“These highly qualified – consensus – nominees should be confirmed without further delay.  They should have been confirmed last year,” said Leahy.  “One hundred and thirty million Americans live in circuits or districts with a judicial vacancy that could be filled if Senate Republicans would consent to votes on these nominees.  The delays are as damaging as they are inexplicable.”

Despite the Senate’s longstanding tradition of routinely considering and confirming consensus judicial nominations, Senate Republicans have withheld consent to move forward with votes on judicial nominations that have received broad, bipartisan support.  A total of 19 judicial nominations are pending on the Senate floor.  Fourteen of the nominations were reported to the full Senate by the Judiciary Committee in 2011, including a dozen nominations that received unanimous support from the 18 members of the Judiciary Committee.

“Ultimately, it is the American people who pay the price for this unnecessary and harmful delay in confirming judges,” said Leahy.  “It is unacceptable for hardworking Americans seeking their day in court to find seats on one in 10 benches around the country vacant.  When an injured plaintiff sues to help cover the cost of medical expenses, that plaintiff should not have to wait for years before a judge hears his or her case.  When two small business owners disagree over a contract, they should not have to wait years for a court to resolve their dispute.  We owe more to the people we represent than these senseless delays.”

While judicial nominations languish on the Senate calendar, more than 80 judicial vacancies persist across the country.

Nominations Pending On The Senate Calendar

 

Gina M. Groh (ND WV)

Reported on October 6, 2011

Mary E. Phillips (WD MO)

Reported on October 6, 2011

David Nuffer (D UT)

Reported on October 13, 2011

Thomas O. Rice (ED WA)

Reported on October 13, 2011

Stephanie D. Thacker (4th Circuit)

Reported on November 3, 2011

Michael W. Fitzgerald (CD CA)

Reported on November 3, 2011

Ronnie Abrams (SD NY)

Reported on November 3, 2011

Rudolph Contreras (D DC)

Reported on November 3, 2011

Miranda Du (D NV)

Reported on November 3, 2011

Susie Morgan (ED LA)

Reported on November 10, 2011

Jacqueline H. Nguyen (9th Circuit)

Reported on December 1, 2011

Gregg J. Costa (SD TX)

Reported on December 1, 2011

David C. Guaderrama (WD TX)

Reported on December 1, 2011

Brian C. Wimes (ED/WD MO)

Reported on December 15, 2011

Paul J. Watford (9th Circuit)

Reported on February 2, 2012

John Z. Lee (ND IL)

Reported on February 16, 2012

John J. Tharp (ND IL)

Reported on February 16, 2012

George L. Russell, III (D MD)

Reported on February 16, 2012

Kristine G. Baker (ED AR)

Reported on February 16, 2012

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