Senate Confirms Pillard To The D.C. Circuit Court

WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) applauded on Thursday the confirmation of Nina Pillard to serve on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Pillard’s confirmation to a seat left vacant since October 2011 also marks an historic milestone for the prestigious court that will now have five active female judges currently serving.

“Despite having filled nearly half of law school classrooms for the last 20 years, women are grossly underrepresented on our Federal courts.  We need women on the Federal bench,” Leahy said.  “The Senate moved another step forward in that effort by voting to confirm Nina Pillard, one of several highly qualified women nominated by President Obama like Patricia Millett, Elena Kagan, and Sonia Sotomayor. I am proud to support such incredible nominees, and I applaud the Senate for voting to confirm Nina Pillard.” 

Pillard, who was nominated in June and testified before the Committee in July, has a unanimous rating of “well qualified” from the ABA Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary. She has argued nine cases before the Supreme Court and drafted the government’s successful argument in the landmark Supreme Court case, United States v. Virginia, which opened the doors of the Virginia Military Institute to female cadets. Her nomination to the D.C. Circuit is supported by Viet Dinh, the former Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Policy under President George W. Bush, former FBI Director and Chief Judge of the Western District of Texas William Sessions, 30 former members of the U.S. armed forces including 8 retired generals, 25 former Federal prosecutors and other law enforcement officials, and 40 Supreme Court practitioners including Laurence Tribe and Carter Phillips. 

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