Senate obstruction of judicial nominees when the other party occupies the White House is “worse than a zero-sum game. It’s a game where everybody loses,” an editorial in the Chicago Tribune asserts.
The Tribune is the latest newspaper to decry the “growing national problem” of vacancies on our federal courts, urging Democrats and Republicans to commit to “give up their blocking maneuvers except for genuinely controversial nominees.”
The most recent maneuver was by Sen. Lindsey Graham, who said last week he would block all nominations until funding was allocated for a study on the Port of Charleston. (Graham backed down when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid agreed several days later to find funding for the project.)
Meanwhile, as the editorial points out, "criminal defendants, who are normally guaranteed a trial within 70 days, wait up to six months," and civil litigants wait two years for a trial to begin.
The Tribune's editorial followed not long after the editorial board met with several ACS members and the ACS Board Chair.
There are now 94 vacant federal court seats subject to Senate confirmation. Learn more about the judicial vacancy crisis and follow developments at JudicialNominations.org.