Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
August 27, 2014

Are Democrats Trying to Pack the Courts?

Senate Republicans appear set to block President Obama’s three most recent appointments to the powerful DC Circuit Court of Appeals and Democrats are threatening to restrict the use of the filibuster, but Ramesh Ponnuru makes the case that “the Republicans have the better of the current argument.”

“A reasonable case can be made against filibustering judicial nominations, or for it. What can’t reasonably be argued is that Democrats should be able to use the tactic to keep a judgeship open until they have the power to fill it with a liberal, at which point Republicans have to stand down.”

  • CJR

    Aren’t 10% of federal judgeships open?
    Didn’t the GOP prevent Clinton from appointing dozens of judges?
    And the GOP is doing it again.
    When GWB started packing the courts, filling positions that had been open for, in some cases six YEARS, with politically reliable appointees, was THAT “packing the courts”?
    If one side does it and it’s okay, then don’t scream when the other side does it, too.

    • NMoshe

      Don’t let facts get in the way of a conservative talking point.

      Also, don’t let facts get in the way of the media’s obsession with trying to maintain a false balance of equivalency.

  • HeraSentMe

    Just one more example of Republicans refusing to accord this president the right to act that they demand Democrats give to Republican presidents.

    Harry Reid: Eliminate the Republican ability to block presidential appointees by filibuster. Today would be soon enough.

  • DemInExile

    Love how the media almost always ignores the fact that 5 of 6 senior judges, who are still hearing cases, were GOP appointees. Meaning 9 of 14 total judges in the DC court are GOP nominees.

    Also love how the media never seems to mention that the GOP is the party that has made “preventing judicial activism” (ie Making sure the GOP is in power so they can nominate judges the GOP approves of) a huge part of their platform. In other words, the GOP has been very clear and open that a major focus of their attempt to guide public policy is to make sure they get to pack the courts. And they have been open about this. And the media doesn’t point this out when they start complaining. So frustrating.

    Is it time to replace the word “lawyer” with the word “journalist” in all those jokes?

  • Digger66

    Packing the courts? Yes, how DARE the President DO HIS JOB and appoint judges to empty seats. Oh, the horror!

    • Paper Boy

      Appointing judges is a low priority right now for President Obama. Apologizing, trying to save the PPACA, and Bill Clinton telling Obama to honor the promise that people can keep the insurance. You might be watching the news, but either you are in shock, or in denial of current events.

      • dadofdante

        Wrong as usual. Please tell us how many empty seats there are and how many Barack Obama appointments are pending confirmation.

        • Paper Boy

          The point is other issues are far more important than appointing judges. Obamacare is nearing a possible Waterloo and even Leonard Pitts piles on.

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