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Friday, June 03, 2005

Feinstein in tabular form:

Apparently there is a debate going on between Sid Blumenthal and John Hinderaker of Powerline. Blumenthal is making the case the Republicans blocked Clinton's judicial nominations and refers to a speech made by Diane Feinstein on 10 May 2005. It's a long speech and goes into detail about some nominees, but not others. It's a little easier to see it as a table, which makes it clear how many nominations didn't get a hearing or a vote (and sometimes why).

Feinstein begins with a historical review of the Senate's handling of judicial nominations, including two by Clinton (Richard Paez and Marsha Bershon). Then she says:
I would like to go over a few nominees from the last administration who have been filibustered by Republicans, and filibustered successfully on many occasions by as little a number as one Republican; filibustered in a way that it was secret; filibustered in a way that the individual never received a hearing or a markup in Judiciary or a vote on the Senate floor. Then I would like an answer to the question, which is better, a filibuster by 40 Members on the floor openly declared, publicly debating, discussing an individual's past speeches, an individual's temperament, character, opinions, or a filibuster in secret when one does not know who or why?

I begin with ...

  WHO WHAT WHEN HEARING VOTE DURATION STOPPED WITHDRAW
1 Clarence Sundram [unstated] September 29, 1995 July 31, 1996
June 25, 1997
no vote in committee, no floor vote   He was simply killed in committee by a filibuster of one or two, or the chairman's decision not to bring the nomination to the floor.  
  Clarence Sundram was the chairman of the New York Commission for the Mentally Disabled. He was supported by both home State Senators Moynihan and D'Amato. On seven occasions, Senator Leahy spoke on the Senate floor urging that a vote be taken on Sundram, but no vote was ever taken.
2 James A. Beaty, Jr. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit December 22, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee more than 1,000 days He was blocked by Senator Helms.  
  renominated January 7, 1997 no hearing no vote in committee      
  nominated U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina   [unstated] confirmed by the Senate in 1994      
  Before that, he spent 13 years as a judge in the North Carolina Superior Court.
On November 21, 1998, National Journal reported that Senator Helms wanted President Clinton to name to the Fourth Circuit one of the Senator's proteges, Terrence W. Boyle, whose nomination to that bench was killed when the Democrats ruled the Senate and George Bush was President, but the Clinton White House refused and Senator Helms made it clear that President Clinton would not get Beaty confirmed until he nominated Boyle.
Then Senator Helms supported Beaty when he was nominated for his current position as a U.S. district court judge. But this shows how things worked, where one person could deny a nomination.
3 Helene White U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit January 7, 1997 no hearing no vote in committee 4 years, longer than any other judicial nominee in history, according to the Associated Press. Senator Abraham waited 2 years before turning in his blue slip, and after turning in the blue slip did not endorse Ms. White. That, again, is how things worked. One person -- not 41 people on the floor debating, but 1 person in secret holding up a nominee. That is just as much a filibuster, and even more effective a filibuster.  
  renominated January 26, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee      
  renominated for a third time January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee      
  She had been a judge on the Michigan Court of Appeals. She served as a Wayne County circuit judge for nearly 10 years. She sat on the Common Pleas Court for the city of Detroit and served on the board of directors of the Michigan legal services. President Clinton thanked her for hanging in there through an ordeal that no one should have to endure. It is my understanding Senator Levin, one of the Michigan Senators, supported her.
4 Jorge Rangel U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit July 24, 1997 no hearing no vote in committee   He was subsequently nominated after he was no longer on the ABA panel, at which time, Texas Monthly has reported, he was blocked by his two home state Senators. So, two persons there.  
  He was a partner in Rangel & Chriss, a Corpus Christi law firm, and specialized in personal injury, libel, and general media litigation. He was presiding judge of the 347th Circuit Court in Nueces County from October of 1983 to June of 1985, and a former assistant professor of law at the University of Houston. He was originally recommended to the White House by Senator Bob Krueger, but removed his name from consideration because, according to a July 25, 1997 Dallas Morning News article, he was then a member of the American Bar Association Panel that reviews federal court nominees, which made him ineligible.
5 Barry Goode U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit 1998 no hearing no vote in committee 2 1/2 years The reason for the block was an anonymous Republican who, to this day, is not known.  
  renominated January 26, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee      
  renominated a third time January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee      
  He was a partner at the time at the San Francisco law firm of McCutchen, Doyle, Brown & Enersen. He had practiced law since 1974. He was an adjunct professor of environmental law at the University of San Francisco and served 2 years as special assistant to Senator Adlai E. Stevenson III. The ABA rated him as qualified. He was supported by both myself and Senator Boxer. Senator Leahy spoke at least eight times on the Senate floor, urging that Goode's nomination be considered, but a filibuster of one, hidden, in secret, nobody knowing who it was, essentially killed this nomination.
6 Legrome Davis U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
July 30, 1998 no hearing no vote nearly 2 1/2 years he was stopped for nearly 2 1/2 years by an unknown individual  
  renominated January 26, 1999 no hearing no vote      
  Bush renominated at Senator Specter's request January 23,2002 [unstated] confirmed by a unanimous vote of the Senate on April 18, 2002      
7 Lynnette Norton U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania on April 29, 1998 no hearing no vote in committee more than 2 1/2 years Senator Santorum, I believe, did not return the blue slip. According to a November 18, 1999 article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, a hold was placed on Ms. Norton’s nomination.  
  renominated January 26, 1999. no hearing no vote in committee      
  She died suddenly in March 2002 of a cerebral aneurysm. It is my understanding Senator Specter supported Norton.
8 H. Alston Johnson U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth District April 22, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee over a year and a half According to articles in the Baton Rouge Advocate on July 10, 2000, and January 8, 2001, it is my understanding an individual Senator blocked his nomination from proceeding, even though both Republicans and Democrats appeared willing to confirm him.  
  renominated January 4, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee     His nomination was withdrawn by President Bush on March 19, 2001.
  He was supported by both home State Senators, Senators Breaux and Landrieu.
9 James E. Duffy, Jr. U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit June 17, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee   Again, a secret hold, one person. Two home State Senators supporting this individual and the individual does not go forward. That is as much a filibuster as anything going on on the floor at this time.  
  renominated January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee      
  He is from Honolulu, had been a litigator for his entire legal career, been a partner in the Honolulu law firm of Fujiyama, Duffy, and Fujiyama since 1975. He was former president of both the Hawaii State Bar and the Hawaii Trial Lawyers Association. He would have been the first active Hawaii member of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in 15 years, despite rules that at least 1 judge must sit in each of the States within the Ninth Circuit. He was unanimously rated as well qualified. He was supported by both Hawaii Senators. There has been no explanation forthcoming of who blocked his progress.
10 Elena Kagan U.S. District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia June 17, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee   It is my understanding three Senators argued that the DC Circuit did not need any more judges, an argument that had been used to delay the confirmation of Judge Merrick Garland between 1995 and 1997.  
  She is currently the dean of Harvard Law School. She was a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, and a former domestic adviser to President Bill Clinton when she was nominated. She was special counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee during the confirmation hearings of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She served as Associate Counsel to the President from 1995 to 1996, and Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, and Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council from 1997 to 1999. Prior to that she was professor of law at the University of Chicago, tenured. She worked at the Washington, DC, law firm of Williams and Connolly, and she clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall. A substantial majority of the ABA rated her qualified. A minority rated her well qualified.
  See, this was another thing that was happening during that time. Let me just say it like it was. Vacancies on the DC Circuit -- a critical and important circuit because it reviews all of the administrative appeals -- were purposely kept open, preventing President Clinton from filling that circuit, thus leaving more openings for the next President. Here three Senators kept this very qualified and very distinguished nominee from receiving a vote or a hearing on the committee. Again, a secret, hidden filibuster.

And, nevertheless, Senate Republicans supported the nomination by President Bush of Miguel Estrada tot he same circuit court in 2002.
11 James Wynn U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit on August 5, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee   The Associated Press, on December 29, 2000, reported that Senator Helms blocked Judge Wynn. One person blocks a distinguished jurist, a filibuster of one, and not a word said.  
  renominated January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee     President Bush withdrew Judge Wynn's nomination on March 19, 2001.
  As you can see, President Clinton made one last try before he left office. He was a judge on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and had previously served on the North Carolina Supreme Court. When nominated, he was a Navy reservist in the JAG corps of the U.S. Navy with the rank of captain. He served as the ABA's first African-American chair of the Appellate Judges Conference whose membership includes over 600 Federal and State appellate judges. He was on the board of governors of the American Judicature Society and was a vice president of the North Carolina Bar Association. He was an executive board member of the Uniform State Laws Commission and a drafter of the Revised Uniform Arbitration Act, Uniform Tort Apportionment Act, and proposed Genetic Discrimination Act. He was rated qualified by the ABA screening committee. Senator Edwards supported him
12 Kathleen McCree-Lewis U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit Court September 19, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee more than a year On March 21, 2001, the Detroit Free Press reported that she was blocked by one of her home State Senators, namely Senator Abraham. Let me quote the Detroit Free Press. M cCree-Lewis never "got a hearing in the Senate, thanks to Abraham's epic obstructionism."  
  renominated January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee      
  She was a distinguished appellate attorney with Dykema Gossett, one of the largest law firms in Michigan. She had been active in the Michigan bar from 1996 to 1999. She chaired the rules advisory committee of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. From 1992 to 1995, she cochaired the appellate practice committee of the ABA section of litigation. From 1987 to 1998, she was editor of the Sixth Circuit section of the Appellate Practice Journal and is a life member of the Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference. She was president of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers. She would have been the first African-American woman to serve on the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. She was rated by the ABA as well qualified.
  Now on January 8, 2001, the Detroit Free Press reported:

“The Senate has been obscenely obstructionist in blocking President Bill Clinton's judicial nominations. Former Senator Spencer Abraham did nothing to help shepherd Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Helene White and Detroit attorney Kathleen McCree Lewis through the system.”

Again, filibuster of one, in secret, with no floor debate.
13 Enrique Moreno U.S. District Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit September 16, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee   In November of 2000, Texas Monthly reported that he was blocked by both home State Senators, again without a hearing or a vote in the Judiciary Committee.  
  renominated January 3, 2001 no hearing no vote in committee      
  At the time of his nomination, Moreno had a longstanding and diverse legal practice in El Paso, working on both civil and criminal law. In the civil area, he represented both plaintiffs and defendants, representing both large business clients and also individuals, advocating their civil rights. In a survey of State judges, he was rated as one of the top trial attorneys in El Paso. A native of Chihuahua, he came to El Paso as a small child, son of a retired carpenter and a seamstress.

The ABA committee unanimously rated him as well qualified.
14 Allen Snyder U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit September 22, 1999 May 10, 2000 no vote in committee   It is my understanding his nomination was blocked by two Judiciary Committee Senators. No reason was given.  
  At the time of his nomination, he was a longtime partner and chairman of the litigation practice at the DC law firm Hogan & Hartson. At Hogan & Hartson, he represented Netscape Communications Corporation in the landmark Microsoft antitrust case.

He was a former law clerk to Chief Justice William Rehnquist. The ABA unanimously rated him well qualified. He served as chair of the Committee on Admissions and Grievances of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, as secretary and executive committee member of the Board of Governors of the District of Columbia Bar, and on the board of the Washington Council of Lawyers.
15 Kent Markus U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit February 9, 2000 no hearing no vote in committee   Both Senators DeWine and Voinovich returned blue slips. He was blocked by one Senator -- a filibuster of one, all hidden, all quiet.  
  He was the director of the Dave Thomas Center for Adoption Law and visiting professor at Capital University Law School at the time of his nomination. He served in numerous high-level legal positions within the Department of Justice, including counselor to the Attorney General, Deputy Chief of Staff for the Office of the Attorney General, and Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legislative Affairs.

He also served as first assistant attorney general and chief of staff for the Ohio Attorney General's Office.

His nomination was supported by 14 past presidents of the Ohio State Bar Association, including Democrats, Republicans, and Independents; more than 80 Ohio law school deans and professors; prominent Ohio Republicans; the National District Attorneys Association; and the National Fraternal Order of Police.

The ABA unanimously rated him as qualified.
16 Bonnie Campbell U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit March 2, 2000 May 25, 2000 no vote in committee   According to a statement given by Senator Leahy to the Judiciary Committee on January 22, 2004, she was blocked by a secret Republican hold from ever getting committee or Senate consideration. Apparently, just one Senator. She had a hearing, as I said, but she never had a vote.  
  renominated January 3, 2001

?

no vote in committee      
  She served for 4 years as Iowa's Attorney General. She is the only woman to have held that office in her State, and she wrote what became a model statute on antistalking for States around the country.

She was selected by President Clinton in 1995 to head the Justice Department's newly created Violence Against Women Office. She emerged as a national leader for her work to bring victims' rights reforms to the country's criminal justice system.

In 1997, Time magazine named her one of the 25 most influential people in America. Praising her for bringing "rock-solid credibility" to her job, Time called Campbell the "force behind a grass-roots shift in the way Americans view the victims -- and perhaps more important, the perpetrators -- of crimes against women."

She oversaw a $1.6 billion program to provide resources to communities for training judges, prosecutors, and police. She was chosen to serve on the President's Interagency Council on Women, chaired by First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton. She also headed the Justice Department's Working Group on Trafficking.
17 Roger Gregory U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit June 30, 2000 no hearing no vote      
  renominated January 3, 2001

?

no vote; recess appointee of President Clinton at the end of the 106th Congress     On March 19, 2001, President Bush withdrew his nomination.
  He was subsequently renominated by President Bush May 9, 2001   confirmed July 20, 2001, by a 93-to-1 vote      
  According to former Senator Chuck Robb, on October 3, 2000:

“Despite the well-documented need for another judge on this court, and despite Mr. Gregory's stellar qualifications, the Judiciary Committee has stubbornly refused to even grant Mr. Gregory the courtesy of a hearing.”

I know Senator Warner supported this judge.

Again, this just goes to show that we are having a major flap because 41 people feel strongly, are willing to come to the floor, and willing to debate a nominee, and all of a sudden the world is going to come to an end, when for years and years and years one or two or three Members of the Senate could prevent a hearing or a markup in the Judiciary Committee or an individual even being brought to the floor.

Which would the public prefer? I would hope it would be a discussion on the floor of the Senate. I would hope it would be laying out the case against the individual, as has been done with every one of the ten -- only ten; in all of President Bush's terms, only ten -- when in President Clinton's term there were 60, and one or two, in secret, kept that individual from being brought to the floor of the Senate and voted on.
  Well, let me continue.
18 John Bingler U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania July 21, 1995 no hearing no vote 2 years On October 16, 1997, the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette reported that one of the two home State Senators held up his nomination After waiting more than 2 years without any action on his nomination, he withdrew on February 12, 1998.
  renominated July 31, 1997 no hearing no vote      
  Since 1971, he has practiced law with the Pittsburgh firm of Thorp, Reed & Armstrong. He served for 6 years as chair of the firm's litigation department.

From 1970 to 1971, he was the public safety director for the city of Pittsburgh. He served for 3 years as an assistant U.S. attorney in Pittsburgh where he prosecuted Federal criminal cases, and for 2 years he was an attorney for the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice. He served a 3-year tour of duty in the U.S. Navy. He was rated unanimously as well qualified by the ABA.
19 Bruce Greer U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida August 1, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee     His nomination was withdrawn on May 13, 1996
  At the time of his nomination, he was the president of the Miami law firm of Greer, Homer & Bonner, where he has a civil litigation practice.

Senator Bob Graham supported him. Senator Connie Mack's position is not known. It is my understanding the Wall Street Journal published a lengthy editorial on July 17, 1996, that made no direct allegations against Greer, but made a case for guilt by association implying that, because Mr. Greer represented certain defendants, he was soft on crime.

The Columbia Journalism Review reported that the day after the editorial appeared, the chairman came to the floor to denounce judges who are soft on crime and, shortly afterward, Mr. Greer received word that he would not be receiving a hearing. So Bruce Greer was denied even a hearing to see if the allegations were true
  That is what has happened, ladies and gentlemen.
20 Leland Shurin U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri April 4, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee     His nomination was withdrawn at his request, because of inaction, on September 5, 1995.
  He was an executive committee member and partner at the law firm of McDowell, Rice & Smith, in Kansas City, where he maintained a general practice doing plaintiff and defense litigation. He was very active in the community.

He was rated as qualified by the ABA committee. He told the Kansas City Star:

I have the sense that my confirmation is being delayed. No one could give me a clear date when anything could be done. I've sat around for two years. I can't keep doing it.
  One has to come to grips with whether this was a fair process, whether this was even as fair as what is happening today. I believe no way, no how was this a fair process. I have been one who has believed that the blue ship should be done away with, that there should be no anonymous holds, and that every appointee should be given a hearing and a vote in the committee. That does not mean that we should change the rules of the Senate to prevent, in extreme cases, the ability of the minority to register a strong point of view, when the minority of one has historically been allowed to register a strong point of view secretly and, in fact, kill a nominee.
21 Sue Ellen Myerscough U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois October 11, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee   On September 27, 1996, the State Journal-Register reported that Senator Simon said he believed the reason was a matter of partisanship, not because of any controversy or problems with her qualifications. Senator Simon said he escorted Myerscough for individual meetings with Senator Hatch and other members of the panel but had "not had a single member of the committee tell me he or she couldn't vote for her."  
  She was an Illinois State circuit court judge. She was an associate circuit court judge. She worked in law firms in Springfield. She formerly clerked for U.S. District Judge Harold Baker. A substantial majority of the ABA committee rated her as well qualified, while a minority rated her as qualified.

She was supported by both Senator Paul Simon and Senator Carol Moseley-Braun at the time. In 1997, Senator Dick Durbin stated in the State Journal-Register that he believed "Judge Myerscough was caught up in a Federal stall."
  This is what has happened. So I have a hard time understanding why we are where we are today.
22 Charles Stack U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit October 27, 1995. February 28, 1996 no vote in committee.   May 11, 1996, Miami Herald, he came under intense attack from then-Presidential candidate Bob Dole he withdrew his nomination on May 13, 1996.
23 Cheryl Wattley U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas December 12, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee.      
  The Dallas Morning News reported in 1996 that she was supported by both home State Senators. Again, no reason, probably filibustered because one or two or three didn't like her for one reason or another.
24 Michael Schattman U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas December 19, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee 2 1/2 years   His nomination at his request was withdrawn on July 1998
  renominated March 21, 1997 no hearing no vote in committee      
  This man was a Texas State district court judge in Fort Worth. He had previously been a county court judge. And to add insult to injury, because of the lengthy delay in the nomination process, the February 11, 1998 edition of the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer reported that he lost his State court judgeship. He was unanimously rated as qualified. Again, this is the hidden filibuster of this body.
25 J. Rich Leonard U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit December 22, 1995, no hearing no vote in committee   Again, my information is that one Senator blocked both of his nominations.  
  He was a judge on the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina at the time of his nomination by President Clinton. He was rated as well qualified.
  (J.R.L. above)
nominated
District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina March 24, 1999. Again, he no hearing no vote over 2.5 years    
  I see there are others waiting. I will be brief. But let me list some of the others.
26 Robert Freedberg U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania April 23, 1998 no hearing no vote   January 28, 1999 Allentown Morning Call reported that he was blocked by one Senator.  
  He was a judge on Northampton County's Court of Common Pleas. He is a former prosecutor.
27 Robert Raymar U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit   no hearing no vote   One person filibustered this individual in committee. nomination expired at the end of the session.
  Former deputy attorney general for the State of New Jersey, member of the New Jersey Executive Commission on Ethical Standards. He was rated as qualified. He was supported by both State Senators.
28 James Lyons U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit   no hearing no vote     withdrew after it became clear he would not receive a hearing or a vote
  He was a longtime senior trial partner at the Denver law firm of Rothberger, Johnson & Lyons, special advisor to the President of the United States and the Secretary of State for economic initiatives in Ireland and Northern Ireland. He couldn't get a hearing. He was adjudged well qualified by the ABA.
  I don't see where anybody is concerned about these injustices, and that is what they were -- real injustices.
29 John Snodgrass U.S. District Court, Northern District of Alabama September 22, 1994 no hearing no vote in committee     His nomination was withdrawn on September 5, 1995.
  renominated January 11, 1995 no hearing no vote in committee      
30 Anabelle Rodriguez U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico January 26, 1996

?

no vote nearly 3 years October 8, 1998, the Associated Press reported that her supporters said she was opposed by Puerto Rico's prostatehood Governor and congressional representative because she is a backer of the island's current status as a U.S. commonwealth, and there was apparently some overwhelming bipartisan opposition.  
  renominated March 21, 1997 October 1 of 1998 no vote      
  Why not vote? If what is being said now has been true and par for the course, why not vote?
31 Lynne Lasry Southern District of California   no hearing no vote     After one year of inaction, the nomination was withdrawn in 1998.
32 James Klein U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia January 27, 1998 no hearing no vote in committee 3 years    
  renominated March 25, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee      
33 Patricia Coan U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado May 27, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee year and a half May 21, 2000 Denver Post reported that one Senator blocked her nomination.  
34 Dolly Gee District Court for the Central District of California May 22, 1999 no hearing no vote in committee year and a half    
35 Fred Woocher U.S. District Court for the Central District of California   November 10, 1999 no vote in committee despite waiting for a year after his hearing.    
36 Steven Bell U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio   no hearing no vote in committee more than a year    
37 Rhonda Fields District Court for the District of Columbia November 17, 1999 no hearing no vote      
38 Robert Cindrich U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit February 9, 2000 no hearing no vote      
39 David Fineman U.S. District for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania March 9, 2000 no hearing no vote      
40 Linda Riegle U.S. District for the District of Nevada April 25, 2000 no hearing no vote      
41 Ricardo Morado U.S. District for the Southern District of Texas May 11, 2000 no hearing no vote      
42 Stephen Orlofsky U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit May 25, 2000 no hearing no vote      
43 Gary Sebelius U.S. District for the District of Kansas June 6, 2000 no hearing no vote      
44 Kenneth Simon U.S. District for the Northern District of Alabama June 6, 2000 no hearing no vote      
45 John S. W. Lim U.S. District for the District of Hawaii June 8, 2000 no hearing no vote      
  Thurmond rule. There is sort of an informal practice that in the last few months of a President's tenure, the hearings do not go forward
46 Christine Arguello U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit July 27, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
47 Andre Davis U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit October 6, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
48 Elizabeth Gibson U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit October 26, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
49 David Cercone U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania July 27, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
50 Harry Litman U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania July 27, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
51 Valerie Couch U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma September 7, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
52 Marian Johnston U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California September 7, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
53 Steve Achelpohl U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska September 12, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
54 Richard Anderson U.S. District Court for the District of Montana September 13, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
55 Stephen Lieberman U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania September 14, 2000 no hearing* no vote*      
56 Melvin Hall U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma October 3, 2000. no hearing* no vote*      
THIS TABLE Clinton: 56 nominees, 21 renominations, 7 hearings, 1 vote, 1 confirmation Bush: 2 renominations, 2 hearings, 2 votes, 2 comfirmations
* - implied; those words ("no hearing", "no vote") not present in Feinstein's speech for those nominees

After listing the history of nominees, Feinstein makes closing remarks, including:
To me, the record I just described and the reasons for opposing these limited number of nominees doesn’t lead to the conclusion that the Senate should be discussing breaking our own institutional rules and unraveling the checks and balances established by our Constitution.

Some have described this debate as a strategy to change the rules. Changing the rules is not only unacceptable, but in this case it is inaccurate as well. The nuclear option is a strategy to break the rules. This isn’t just my assessment; it’s the conclusion drawn by the Senate Parliamentarian and the Congressional Research Service

...

This is a move to wipe out 200 years of precedent when this Senate has only been in session for just over 4 months ...

This appears to me to be an escalation that is unwarranted in the reality of what has actually occurred and is happening in this session.

...

I would hope that the majority would not choose to unravel that foundation over a small handful of nominees. I would hope we would continue to honor the tradition of our democracy. I would hope the President will urge others in his party to walk away from this nuclear strategy. And I know if the shoe was on the other foot, I would not advocate breaking Senate rules and precedent.


[NOTE TO READERS: Minor corrections/additions applied since initial posting.]

UPDATE: We respond to critics in our post above.



56 comments

Great Work! This chart needs to be seen by everyone.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/03/2005 12:35 PM  

Q- thanks for the excellent chart. With regard to John Bingler in the US District Court Western District PA here are two citations to note: One is the Post Gazette article with a clarification by Sen. Santorum. the second are two letters from attorneys who were well acquainted with Mr. Bingler's skills.

By Anonymous deckko, at 6/03/2005 12:46 PM  

You know what else might be nice: pie charts for Clinton and the Shrub, showing nomination / confirmation outcomes. Categories Confirmed / Filibustered / Never Out of Committee / Rejected

Or something like that.

By Blogger Carl, at 6/03/2005 1:06 PM  

did clinton do any shoe banging in protest and demanding to know why his nominees were being held up? did democratic leaders get vocal in charging republicans for being obstructionists for not giving judges hearings? were dems who got on tv and radio all unified and on the same page in demanding that judges got an up and down vote?


or is getting judges confirmed more important to republicans than it was to dems. i don't remember dems getting passionate about this when they were trying to pass their judges.

By Anonymous hello, at 6/03/2005 3:05 PM  

Excellent!!! Enough detail to choke the right whiners. But probably too much for their toddler-time attention spans!

I hope lots of people link to this.

By Anonymous Dot, at 6/03/2005 4:35 PM  

Simple enough that Bush and Frist might even understand. I don't expect them to read or have listened to Feinstein's speech.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 10:56 AM  

What am I missing here? The GOP never fillibustered any of Clinton's nominees. You have a majority of the senate, you get your nominees approved. You don't have a majority, and you may or may not. That is how it has always been up until this presidency. Why have the dems changed the rules?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 2:32 PM  

The Dems didn't change the rules. This table simply shows that the Rethugs are liars, hypocrites and brutal law breaking thugs.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 4:39 PM  

No rules have been changed by the Democrats, especially in a Republican majority Senate! The right to filibuster in the Senate has been with us for about 200 years.

It may be true that none of Clinton's picks were ever stopped by a filibuster. But, that is not because the Republicans did not try, it is because they tried and failed.

Frist, among other Republican Senators voted to filibuser one of Clinton's nominees. Thus, Frist and the other Republicans are hypicrites for criticizing the Democrats.

Kevin Schmidt, Sterling, VA

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 4:54 PM  

labeling your enemies is a sign of intellectual weakness. You, sir, are and idiot.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 8:36 PM  

sp

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 8:37 PM  

So, Feinstein redefines "filibuster" for her (and other credulous leftists) purposes to be anything the denies a candidate a vote. BFD. This chart is a joke. Where are the filibusters that Sidney mentioned? That's what the Sid Vicious/Power Line debate was about. Blumenthal is totally dishonest, but what else can you expect from the left?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/04/2005 9:41 PM  

Even if every way of denying a vote is equally as contemptible as a filibuster(blue slip, majority vote in committee not to forward to the floor, or other parlimentary delay, not to mention the filibuster, then the principle we are left with is that every nominee deserves an up or down vote by the Senate. That is exactly the principle that Feinstein, Biden, Byrd et al. are opposing. So how do they argue that when Republicans prevent a floor vote when they are in majority, they are contemptible, and when Democrats prevent a floor vote when in the minority they are honorable? Crow anyone?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 11:57 AM  

Well said. The objective is get everyone an up or down vote. It shouldn't matter who is in the majority. Are we going to cotinue to whine and get even or are we going to fix the system so it is fair for everyone? If Feinstein really cared about everyone having an up or down vote she would worked to eliminate the right of a home state senator to prevent a condidate from being nominated.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 3:29 PM  

Feinstein did not "redefine" filibuster, rather, she attempted to show that the republican's cry that the judges should get an up-or-down vote, and that it is unconstitutional to do anything less is disingenuous. If they truly held that belief, why did they hold up so many of President Clinton's nominees? It is the height of hypocrisy. The democrats were not out in the streets, President Clinton was not on TV crying about it, and I do not believe that Senator Daschell ever attended an event like the one Senator Frist attended.

This is all BS. The republicans in the Bush administration want one thing: TOTAL POWER. If they can't get it through normal means, they complain about abuses of power by the minority? In this day, with the congress we have, with the courts we have, and with the Bush team in power, what power does the minority truly hold?

I just hope that the democrats remember this treatment when they take back the white house, house, and senate.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 3:31 PM  

well in defense of the hypocritical republicans apparently they didnt like blue slipping either so they changed that rule in 2001. so now most of the incidents on Fiensteins chart would be eliminated. lets not forget 21 of those in the chart were nominated in the last 6 months of Clintons presidency, a time when he knew there would be no vote.

RESOLUTION OPPOSING CAROLYN KUHL'S NOMINATION TO THE 9TH CIRCUIT AND IN
SUPPORT OF SENATOR BARBARA BOXER'S WITHHOLDING JUDGE KUHL'S BLUE SLIP


WHEREAS Carolyn Kuhl, a nominee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, has long advocated overturning Roe v. Wade, has shown her opposition to a women's right of privacy (Sanchez-Scott v. Alza
Pharmaceuticals), has been a strong advocate for Bob Jones University, an institution known for its racist practices, and for the "separate but equal" doctrine of Plessy v. Ferguson (overturned by a unanimous Supreme Court in
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas), and opposes progressive labor laws, especially any restrictions on the right of employers to fire at will, and



WHEREAS, the Bush Administration is making a concerted effort to pack our Federal Courts with extreme right-wing judicial appointees, and the appointment of Carolyn Kuhl to the 9th Circuit Court, combined with the recent addition of anti-choice, anti-equal protection Judge Jay Bybee to this court, would detrimentally impact the balance of this court and change the lives of all people living in California and other 9th Circuit states, and


WHEREAS the Republican dominated Senate changed the rules on blue slip "management" in 2001 in an egregious attempt to circumvent Senatorial Prerogative and, if confirmed, Carolyn Kuhl will be the first federal judicial nominee in the history of this country to be confirmed to a Federal judgeship, on whom a blue slip was retained by a Home State Senator,



THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Santa Clara County calls upon Senator Diane Feinstein to remain true to the Democratic Party as pro-choice, pro-labor and opposed to racial discrimination and that she take all necessary action to oppose the nomination of Carolyn Kuhl to the 9th Circuit, including filibuster if necessary, and

My reference

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Committee also calls upon (Senate Minority Leader) Tom Daschle, (Senate Minority Whip) Harry Reid and all other members of the Senate to show respect for Senator Barbara Boxer and for Senatorial Privilege and the blue slip process by opposing the nomination of Carolyn Kuhl, including by filibuster if necessary.

By Blogger Chad, at 6/05/2005 4:37 PM  

Stunningly good.

By Blogger Riggsveda, at 6/05/2005 4:50 PM  

Still no filibuster of any Clinton nominees. If you don't know the meaning of filibuster LOOK IT UP

By Anonymous The truth hurts, at 6/05/2005 5:36 PM  

So, no filibuster.

Case closed. Thanks for the table.

By Blogger Bob, at 6/05/2005 6:32 PM  

What is this statement that "right wingers" (intended as a comprehensive perjorative) want total power? "Right wingers" want the opposite of total power which limited government (not zero government), not because we oppose fairness, but realizing that unfairness can't be eliminated, we rely on history's clear lessons to conclude that big government (even when originally well intentioned) results in a more powerful, dangerous and cruel form of unfairness than individual liberty and free markets. We don't trouble ourselves with delusional beliefs in utopias or third way choices that don't really exist. We're sorry that the world isn't perfect and that it can't be made that way, but we live in a world of reality and make choices recognizing the imperfect choices we have.

What does this have have to do with judges? We are opposed to judges that broadly and livingly interpret the constitution because we believe it dilutes and erodes the constitutional protections and structure of our personal liberty centric system. With respect to the latest argument on who got more judges approved, the Republican argument was narrowly constructed to assert that a nominee that had been voted out of committee and enjoyed apparent support of the majority of senators should be entitled to test that vote. None of the judges on Feinstein's chart meet that criteria. There is no hypocrisy in the Republican's argument. When Republicans were in the majority with a Democratic president, Democrats couldn't get several judges out of committee. That's because the country chose split government. As an aside, this was also true for Bush when the Democrats had a brief majority (vis a vis Jeffords). For the time being, the country has not chosen split government, but empowered Republicans in 2 of 3 branches, in some measure to empower Republicans to influence the 3rd branch. This is to balance out a perception of the judiciary being too liberal and big-government oriented. These balances swing back and forth, and the Democrats are trying to avoid a shift that is wanted by the majority to rebalance previous liberal dominance of the judiciary (as measured by rulings desired by liberals versus conservatives). If allowed, the courts would become a one way ratchet towards liberalism, which is not desired by the electorate.

There are really two major areas where conservatives are said by liberals to be hypocritical in being opposed to personal liberty - abortion and public decency. With respect to abortion, if you believe a fetus is a life, then abortion is not a matter of choice or personal liberty for the mother, it is a matter of the right to life of the fetus. You may not believe a fetus is a life, but you can't argue that it is hypocritical for a small government, personal liberty conservative to oppose a judicially imposed right to an abortion when the premise of that opposition is rooted in the constitutional protection of the right to life. It is quite hard to argue that a woman should have the "choice" at 8.5 months of term to have a fully viable fetus delivered feet first, the head punctured with scissors and the brains sucked out (all without anesthesia for the child which can undoubtedly feel pain as much as newborn) for any reason whatsoever (other than to literally save her own life). Conservatives don't want judges that find that anyone has the "right" to engage in such callous and barbaric destruction of human life.

With respect to public decency and censorship, conservatives, by and large, don't argue that people shouldn't have the right in certain private situations to see/read/do things that many/most might consider indecent. We only argue that we are entitled to a right to not be exposed to those things in a public sphere (the town square, open airwaves, etc.) Do it in you own house, on pay-per-view, etc. We don't care, but we have a right to a reasonable standard of decency in the public square.

While there may be some "conservatives" that would violate principles of small government and personal liberty by attempting to impose morality laws, these folks are not true conservatives, nor do they represent anywhere near a significant enough percentage to be successful in those inclinations. Liberals will of course tell you that these are the folks that control the Republican party and dominate it numerically. This is a lie and merely a scare tactic to cause the electorate to fear conservatives in power so liberals instead can be in power and impose their destructive, big-government solutions on the rest of us at the true expense of personal liberty. The only social equality and social justice that can truly be achieved is equality in misery at the hand of a totalitarian and oppressive government. History has proven that and I don't care to try again just because the alternative isn't perfect.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 8:27 PM  

This page attempts to reframe the dispute: "Blumenthal is making the case the Republicans blocked Clinton's judicial nominations..." Hmmm. Wasn't Blumenthal's statement that the Republicans led filibusters of 65 Clinton judicial nominees? Interesting how we get from "filibuster" to "blocked" when the facts don't support the words. I guess it depends on your definition of "filibuster." Thanks for the chart that proves that point.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 8:57 PM  

The chart nicely proves that none were filibustered. Most could not make it through the early vetting process. Right or wrong, tradition has allowed the senators from a state approval of a nomination. Nothing has changed. Nominees must receive a committee hearing to advance. Nothing has changed. Nominees reported out of committee receive a vote. Ah, here something has changed. Only the current Democratic leadership (including those not returned to office) have inserted this new hurdle against voting on justices. Is it not disengenous, at best, to claim the system wasn't fair, then to make it worse, and now claim the high road? It's perfectly clear the Democrats have political goals, and some revenge, as their motivation. The rhetoric spewed for the media is all a cover for those goals, and this chart is a nice proof. Thanks.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/05/2005 9:43 PM  

The right wingers are nick-picking over the term filibuster when the real point is that the Republican party during the Clinton Administration time and time again did not allow a up or down vote on Clinton nominations by using various stall tatics.

What is the difference between that and a filibuster? Different tactics, same result. You can nick-pick all you want, the Republicans simply abused the precess in a different way and in the end, it's all the same. RIght wingers are simply nick-picking in order to avoid the real issue.

Sorry, not falling into that trap.

Now lets get to that Downing Street memo...

By Blogger ctblogger, at 6/05/2005 10:23 PM  

"nit"-picking. Not "nick"-picking.

Just increasing your knowledge.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 2:17 AM  

(a) FILIBUSTER. "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

(b) Note that most of these stalled nominations are post-Lewinsky. When it was revealed that President Clinton lied under oath, the grand machinery of federal government gradually oriented itself toward impeachment. That the impeachment was a factor in the failure rate of Clinton's nominees is indisputable, although no one can say how large a factor it was. This is yet another illustration why a government official, especially a President, should resign once impeachment becomes likely -- the effectiveness of that individual is seriously undermined.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 2:25 AM  

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/congress/jan-june05/filibuster_5-16.html
GWEN IFILL: Jeremy Mayer, in this debate that's going on right now, one of the things that the folks who are in favor of the presidential judicial nominees have said consistently, in fact, on this program many times, have said this has never been used this way before; that the filibuster has never been used and shouldn't be used to derail a presidential judicial nominee. Is that true?

JEREMY MAYER: That is flat out not true. There was the Fortis nomination, but moreover, some of the Republicans who have been saying that actually voted for unsuccessful filibuster attempts against Clinton's nominees.

GWEN IFILL: Explain the Abe Fortis nomination; this was a Johnson nomination to be chief justice.

JEREMY MAYER: Johnson was leaving office and Fortis was being promoted to chief justice. Now, a lot of ethical complaints emerged about Fortis, who was also quite liberal and controversial.

GWEN IFILL: He was already on the court.

JEREMY MAYER: He was already on the court. And there was a filibuster attempt made and it was clear that they didn't have the votes probably even to get a majority for Fortis, so they allowed the nomination to die; they withdrew it. But there have been more recent filibuster by Republicans to stop judicial nominations but just weren't successful. So I think it's -- we shouldn't give them credit for voting and not succeeding.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 5:50 AM  

up thread
"government (even when originally well intentioned) results in a more powerful, dangerous and cruel form of unfairness than individual liberty and free markets."

This is the crux of the ongoing argument since the founding of this country. To me it's really a question of property vs. human rights. The rights of citizens aren't given by the government , they are inalienable but the founding fathers never defined the term "man". They most certainly could have written, had they so chosen "We hold these truths to be self evident that all propertied white male Christians are created equal and everyone else shall be subject to their rule. One can argue, that such requirements for a franchise were a natural assumption and therefore didn't require such definition. Now, it just so happens that by this description I am a member of the club but I doubt that women, blacks, Jews etc. would willfully give up their franchise for the sake of what the best minds of the 18th century viewed as worthy, in any case. More times than not the courts have sided with property. The Dred Scott decision is a perfect example of how the interpretation of the constitution can have far reaching results. That a set a people were property- chattel and had no individual rights is as logical to the small r republicans is it is reprehensible to me. It surely was "unfair" to all the slave owners who were stripped of their property without compensation, was it not? Just or not, looking back which interpretation holds today? It also should be pointed out, that thanks in no small part to the courts like minded rigid interpretation, American citizens died by the hundreds of thousands. Big deal, right? "Why can't people simply accept the fact that things done by Republicans are different than things done by others? Why, indeed. For the same reason Koran flushing must be proven before we have desecration (pissing on it doesn't count)?
" We are opposed to judges that broadly and livingly interpret the constitution because we believe it dilutes and erodes the constitutional protections and structure of our personal liberty centric system."
Slavery may not be economical in the modern world but should anyone who isn't a landed white Christian male have the right to vote?
Where was all the faux Libertarian outrage when the SCOTUS ended the Florida recount in 2000? The same place it was when the judiciary was busy turning CONSENSUAL behavior of citizens into a CRIMINAL act of harassment, no doubt. Yes, I know "it wasn't the sex it was the lying". Why should the government be entitled to ask ANYONE about private consensual non criminal behavior let alone expect a truthful answer regarding such?
No I wasn't a big fan of Clinton, particularly his neo liberal economics. Most of his detractors never talked about policy because as stated here "free markets" should be the final arbiter of all things. Clinton made the mistake of thinking that the excesses of free markets-globalism will ever be restrained by politicians, especially when the other side pays better.
Example. I doubt any politician would run on the platform that in order to create jobs we need to abandon child labor laws and allow our factories to dump their untreated waste in to the nearest river. Of course they don't need to, because our corporations can simply move their manufacturing to parts of the world where such laws do not exist. Who cares where the jobs go as long as I have my portfolio, right? Strange too, how after decades of the Bircher's hand ringing about the Red menace, I see the very same people blissfully filling there baskets at the Wal-Mart with goods from China as they sign another IOU to their sworn enemy. It's not their fault that Mammon must be served. Heaven forbid, tis better not to have the socialists of this country organize for a living wage, benefits or universal health care and all those other thing reserved for the ruling class.
" these folks are not true conservatives, nor do they represent anywhere near a significant enough percentage to be successful in those inclinations."
You ARE the one living in the dream world. Read this: Inside America's most powerful megachurch
Soldiers of Christ I (Harpers.org)
http://www.harpers.org/SoldiersOfChrist.html
Soldiers of Christ II http://www.harpers.org/FeelingTheHate.html

You are right about one thing they are not true conservatives. I come from a long line of Republican movers and shakers but I will never vote for one again. For the sake of power they have abandoned all principle to curry favor with a segment of the population
that has the STATED objective for theocratic rule. Read some European history to see where this one will take us. One of the reasons my ancestors came to this country in the 1700's was to escape religious persecution and you are saying don't worry they "aren't a significant enough percentage"? Not a chance. Good god, have you ever read any of the stuff Tom Delay or Roy Moore says? I'm a nobody but take a look at what insiders say. Google, Scott Ritter, Ray McGovern, Paul Craig Roberts, Kevin Phillips to name just a few. To listen to Murdoch's minions the only people who disagree with this Administration are bunch of misguided do gooders, tin foil hatter, Michael Moore dupes. Sleep well my friends. I pray every day I will be wrong but I wouldn't bet against it and I will be in good company. Put me down as one who believes the shit is going to hit the fan and the Finklesteins of this country will be the ones trying to extinguish the flames of their pyre while the Helms' of the world marvel at the construction of their exquisite petard.
How exactly will our place in R&D be secured once our children have been properly taught that the earth was created in 7 days and is 5 thousand years old? By throwing our embryos down the toilet instead of using them for research will the rest of the world follow our "moral" example? Will any cures found else where, using embryo research, be legal here or like abortions pre Roe, will the wealthy will simply go elsewhere for access? Let the market decide all.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 9:43 AM  

The Ayatollah of Holy Rollers

America's Religious Right - Saints or Subversives?
By Steve Weissman
t r u t h o u t | Investigation
Part V: "The Ayatollah of Holy Rollers"
Tuesday 31 May 2005

This is part 5 of a 5-part series.
Part I: The Lure of Christian Nationalism
Part II: Hang Ten and Fight!
Part III: A Deadly Culture of Life
Part IV: Pie in the Sky
Part V: "The Ayatollah of Holy Rollers"

Death by stoning for atheists, adulterers, and practicing male homosexuals.

Stoning - or possibly burning at the stake - for atheists, heretics, religious apostates, followers of other religions who proselytize, unmarried females who are unchaste, incorrigible juvenile delinquents, and children who curse or strike their parents.

And, oh yes, death to witches, Satanists, and those who commit blasphemy.

Does this sound like a radical Islamist nightmare, a replay of Afghanistan under the Taliban?

Welcome to the United States of America as Christian Reconstructionists hope to run it. Not as a democracy, which they see as secular heresy. But as a reconstructed Christian nation, complete with biblically sanctioned flogging and slavery.

The Bible rules, OK? And, in its name, a small elect of true believers are now seeking capital-D Dominion over every aspects of our government, laws, education, and personal lives.

An Unlikely Prophet

Reconstructionists have become the extremists to watch, and the key to understanding the current political zing of everyone on the religious right from Sunday-go-to-church Southern Baptists to neo-Nazis in Christian identity militias.

The movement and its "Dominion Theology" are relatively new, dating from the publication in 1973 of The Institutes of Biblical Law by the late Rousas John Rushdoony. A man of widely acclaimed brilliance and near-encyclopedic knowledge, Rushdoony claimed to descend from a long line of aristocratic Armenian clerics reaching back to the year 315. http://www.truthout.org/docs_2005/printer_053105A.shtml

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 10:30 AM  

This is completely irrelevent data to the question of filibustering nominees, since it only chronicles nominees after 1995, when the Republicans held majority. The relevent comparison would be Clinton nominees early in his first term, when the Republicans were a Congressional minority, as this provides a clear analogue to the situation currently. This data would have more relency compared against Reagan nominees that were killed in committee by the majority Democrats.

By Blogger submandave, at 6/06/2005 11:09 AM  

ctblogger: "What is the difference [being blocked in committee] and a filibuster? Different tactics, same result."

I take it, then, that you supported the proposal put forth by Bill Frist, then, agreeing that the minority would not filibuster nominies and the majority would not hold up in committee. Why, then, was this flat-out refused by Harry Reid? It sounds completely fair and right, regardless of which party ends up in the majority.

By Blogger submandave, at 6/06/2005 11:14 AM  

It is an interesting list but Ms. Feinstein is not being completely honest in her assessment. Three of the judges on the list were confirmed. If the standard were "Judges who were ever blocked" then a large number of Bush judges would be considered "blocked" judges as many were renominated several times before finally being confirmed. One judge died, hardly the work of Republican partisanship. And seventeen judges were nominated after the 2000 election which had no chance of being considered and were withdrawn (except one who was renominated and later confirmed) by the new president. It's is, to say the least, rather odd for an outgoing President to nominate so many judges on his way out of office knowing full-well that they had little to no chance of being considered. Maybe that was a Blumenthal-inspired effort to manipulate the record. I wouldn't put it past him.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2005 11:35 AM  

Step back. Make an attempt to see the forest, despite the trees.
Back beyond the issue of a president’s nominations for judicial appointments.

The current Senate majority leaders are advocating coercion over persuasion. The change of rules they suggest will effect all future votes taken in the Senate. The Senate will cease to be the deliberative body it has been for over 200 years.
It is not that the left does not recognize the harsh reality of history. On the contrary, we see but will not shrug our shoulders as if to say, “It has always been thus, it is the way of the world”. We refuse to accept that the system cannot be made more humane, changed for the betterment of the country’s citizenry. When an appeal such as the one above is made in the guise of “market forces”, what is it if not a call for fatalistic capitulation to a predetermined “way the world is”/law of the jungle view of the world?
“Winning is the only thing” is a fine attitude for sports but it is not a philosophy to live your life by, much less to govern a country by. The very Constitution the current Senate leaders swore to uphold is a testament to the proposition that the Ends DO NOT justify the Means, but rather that the Means are the Ends. How we as a People conduct our affairs is as important as the issues themselves.
The coercive threat of the rules change runs contrary to the very spirit of our Constitution. To follow through on the threat is tantamount to wiping your ass with the actual 220 y/o document.

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