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Monday, December 5, 2011

Is This the Last Senate Action on Judges for 2011?

Tonight, the Senate will finally hold votes on four long-pending judicial nominees: Edgardo Ramos, James Gilstrap, Andrew Carter, and Dana Christensen, all of whom have been waiting more than 200 days for their votes. And tomorrow at noon, there will be a vote to break a Republican filibuster on the nomination of Caitlin Halligan, who has been waiting over 430 days for her vote.

The filibuster of Halligan's nomination has drawn intense criticism from legal scholars who point to her distinguished record and "unanimously well-qualified" rating from the American Bar Association. But instead of voting on the merits of her nomination, partisan obstruction in the Senate has led to a filibuster, which may keep her from even getting a final yes-or-no vote.

Here are the shocking figures:
  •     25 pending nominees
  •     23 with very strong bipartisan support
  •     21 unopposed in committee
  •     10 to fill judicial emergencies
  •     And if votes were held today on all nominees, their average wait time would be 177 days
Send a message to your senators and to Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Majority Leader Harry Reid -- tell them to end the backlog and hold confirmation votes on all pending nominees, including Caitlin Halligan!


UPDATE 12/5, 6:07 p.m.: The Senate has just voted to confirm Edgardo Ramos, James Gilstrap, Andrew Carter, and Dana Christensen. That's great news, but does not end the Senate's obligation to the American people or to the 21 nominees still waiting on the Senate floor.

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