Sen. Hatch blocks Floor votes on four oldest district court nominees and then oldest
(Republican - Utah)
"I will certainly look at this and see what can be done, but at this present time, I object.... I have only been here 40 years, and this happens every time at the end. They have not been mistreated. The fact is that they have had more judges confirmed in 7 years than President Bush had in a full 8 years, and they are going to have more judges. But it is the majority leader's determination as to when those judges will come up and when they will be confirmed, and I think he has been doing it on a regular basis."
Sen. Rubio clears 3 district court nominees, blocks hearing on fourth
(Republican - Florida)
Sen. Marco Rubio's office said today that he and Sen. Bill Nelson have submitted "blue slips" for three U.S. District Court nominees, advancing them toward confirmation.
They are Judge Patricia D. Barksdale, for the Middle District of Florida; William F. Jung, Middle District of Florida; and Judge Philip R. Lammens, for the Northern District of Florida.
Rubio continues to block Mary Barzee Flores for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District. He had not explained his opposition but asked today, his office issued a statement.
“Senator Rubio recently returned the blue slip for three judges to fill other vacancies throughout Florida, but he will not return the blue slip on Ms. Barzee Flores," spokeswoman Olivia Perez-Cubas said.
"Florida has very busy federal courts and Senator Rubio would like to see judicial vacancies filled promptly with consensus picks who can be swiftly confirmed in a period of divided government. During the Obama administration, there has been an unfortunate trend toward the judiciary playing a more active role in policy-making, which is why Senator Rubio would rather see a judgeship remain vacant than to fill it with the wrong person for a lifetime."
Republican Senators from 16 States Urge Immediate Action to Fill Their Judicial Vacancies (CO, FL, ID, IN, KS, LA; NE, ND, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, WI) (June 2, 2016)
(Republican - Colorado, Utah, Texas, Tennessee, Florida, South Carolina, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Oklahoma, Ohio, Kansas, North Dakota, Louisiana, Nebraska, Wisconsin)
Republican Senators from 15 States Urge Immediate Action to Fill Their Judicial Vacancies (CO, ID, IN, KS, LA; NE, ND, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, WI) (May 23, 2016)
(Republican - Colorado, Utah, Texas, Tennessee, South Carolina, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Oklahoma, Ohio, Kansas, North Dakota, Louisiana, Nebraska, Wisconsin)
OK Sens. applaud Judiciary Committee approval of two district court nominees
(Republican - Oklahoma)
Sens. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, and James Lankford, R-Oklahoma City, applauded the committee's decision to advance the nominees.
"I am hopeful they will soon be serving the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma," Inhofe said Thursday. "Both have received a wide range of praise from Oklahoma leaders and their colleagues, and I fully expect both will soon continue to serve Oklahoma with honor in their new roles.”
Lankford said, "I'm pleased that the Senate Judiciary Committee has affirmed what Oklahomans already knew — Judge Mitchell and Mr. Palk will be solid judges on the U.S. District Court. I congratulate them on this important next step in the process. They are fair-minded nominees who will uphold the rule of law.”
Sen. Hatch Statement on Utahn Ron Russell's Committee Approval to District Court Seat
(Republican - Utah)
On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously approved the nomination of Ronald Russell to the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah. Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a senior member and former Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, had introduced Russell to the committee in April and issued the following statement following his approval:
“Even in this challenging political environment, senators on both sides of the aisle recognized that Ron’s experience, reputation, and character make him a nominee everyone can support. Ron is well known and well respected in the Utah legal community and will continue the tradition of excellence on the U.S. District Court in Utah.”
Prepared Statement by Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Executive Business Meeting
(Republican - Iowa)
"During the last four presidential election years, the last confirmation vote of a circuit court nominee occurred before the summer recess. And the last confirmation vote of a district court nominee occurred in the fall of that year. And I’d note that while there have been nominations hearings held as late as September, my good friend then-Chairman Leahy made clear a number of times that those hearings were “an exception under the Thurmond Rule” and “an accommodation” to other Senators on the
Committee.... going forward, like I said last
week, I suspect there will be more judicial nominees confirmed by the full Senate. ... In this Committee, we’re continuing to process judicial nominees and hold hearings. In fact,
including yesterday’s nominations hearing, we’ve now held hearings for the same number of judicial nominees as Chairman Leahy had at this point in 2007 and 2008. At the end of the day, because there is not a hard and fast rule, the best way I know how to proceed is to look to what has been done in the past, and roughly follow the examples of my predecessors. Based upon prior practice and past statements, the Leahy-Thurmond rule will kick in when the Senate recesses in mid-July. But remember, then-Chairman Leahy has made exceptions, as he called them, to the rule in order to accommodate members of this Committee, so, there can always be limited exceptions."
Sens. Coats, Donnelly Express Support for U.S. District Court Nominee Winfield Ong During Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing
(Republican - Indiana)
Senators Dan Coats (R-Ind.) and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) today testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee during a hearing on judicial nominations. The Indiana senators spoke in support of Winfield D. Ong, who was nominated to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.
Coats said, “Winfield’s colleagues in the legal profession recommend him highly. It is clear to me that he has earned the respect of his peers. In light of Winfield Ong’s qualifications, outstanding record of public service and the ongoing judicial emergency in the Southern District of Indiana, I respectfully ask that you send his nomination to the full Senate for confirmation and trust that the Senate will act swiftly with confirmation.”
Sen. Coats on Indiana district court nominee's Judiciary Committee May 18th hearing
(Republican - Indiana)
Sen. Coats: “I appreciate the Senate Judiciary Committee’s decision to hold a hearing on Winfield Ong’s nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The Judicial Conference of the United States has declared a judicial emergency in Indiana’s Southern District, and Winfield Ong’s successful career in the U.S. Attorney’s Office makes him uniquely qualified to fill this important role. This is a significant step toward confirmation, and I am eager to see this process move forward.”
Sens. Donnelly and Coats Pleased Senate Judiciary Committee Will Hold Hearing on U.S. District Court Nominee Winfield Ong
(Republican - Indiana)
Coats said, “I appreciate the Senate Judiciary Committee’s decision to hold a hearing on Winfield Ong’s nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The Judicial Conference of the United States has declared a judicial emergency in Indiana’s Southern District, and Winfield Ong’s successful career in the U.S. Attorney’s Office makes him uniquely qualified to fill this important role. This is a significant step toward confirmation, and I am eager to see this process move forward.”
Sen. Grassley Floor Statement
(Republican - Iowa)
"Today the Senate will vote on the nomination of Paula Xinis to be a judge for the District of Maryland. I will support that nomination."
Sen. Toomey seeks Senate unanimous consent for Floor votes on judicial nominees
(Republican - Pennsylvania)
"For some time, Senator Casey and I have been working to get all four of these nominees through the process and confirmed, and I strongly believe all four should be confirmed.... the Federal courthouse in Erie, PA--the fourth biggest city in Pennsylvania--has a vacant
courthouse. ... For almost 3 years, there has been no Federal judge able to hear cases, and so the people in Erie and the surrounding counties have very long
travel distances.... There is no question in my mind, both of these women will make
outstanding additions to the Federal bench in Pennsylvania. I believe the seats they will fill, if they are confirmed by the Senate, have been vacant too long. Three years is just far too long. Yesterday my colleague from Pennsylvania, Senator Casey, made a
unanimous consent request for these 2 Pennsylvania judges but also 9
others, for a total of 11. I was not on the Senate floor at the time. Had I been, I would have voiced my support for that request, and I would have agreed to that vote. Unfortunately, Leader McConnell
disagreed and raised an objection. ... I ask unanimous consent that the Senate proceed to
executive session to consider the following nominations: Calendar Nos.
460 and 461.... we have excellent candidates who have been vetted by both sides. They have been chosen by both sides. They have come through the process. They have had their
hearings. They have been reported out by the committee. It does not serve the people of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to have to continue to wait."
Sen. Flake on Chief Judge Merrick Garland Supreme Court nomination
(Republican - Arizona)
"I think Republicans are more than justified in waiting. That is following both principle and precedent. But the principle is to have the most conservative, qualified jurists that we can have on the Supreme Court, not that the people ought to decide before the next election. I've never held that position.
If we come to a point, I've said all along, where we're going to lose the election, or we lose the election in November, then we ought to approve him quickly. Because I'm certain that he'll be more conservative than a Hillary Clinton nomination comes January."
Republican Senators from 14 States Urge Immediate Action to Fill Their Judicial Vacancies (CO, ID, IN, KS, NE, ND, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, WI) (May 4, 2016)
(Republican - Colorado, Utah, Texas, Tennessee, South Carolina, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Oklahoma, Ohio, Kansas, North Dakota, Nebraska, Wisconsin)
Sens. Portman, Brown Request Applications for U.S. District Judgeship Vacancy in Ohios Southern District
(Republican - Ohio)
Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today began accepting applications to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. The Honorable Gregory L. Frost retired from his position yesterday, creating the vacancy. ... “We wish Judge Frost well in his retirement, and thank him for his years of public service,” said Portman. “The commission will weigh the best candidates and give Ohioans an opportunity to have input on the selection.”... In the interest of identifying the best possible judicial candidates for Ohio's federal bench, Portman and Brown are working to establish a bipartisan judicial advisory commission. Members of the commission will be chosen by both senators to review applications and recommend candidates for this vacancy.
Sen. Gardner Statement on President’s Nomination to Colorado District Court
(Republican - Colorado)
President Obama nominated Regina Rodriguez to the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. In August, Gardner announced a Judicial Evaluation Committee tasked with making recommendations to fill the Colorado judgeship, and in November, the Committee unanimously recommended four highly qualified legal professionals, including Rodriguez. In February, Gardner joined Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) in submitting recommendations to fill the impending vacancy to the White House. Rodriguez was one of the recommendations put forward by Sen. Gardner's Judicial Vacancy Committee.
“Regina Rodriguez is one of Denver’s best litigators, and has served Colorado well,” said Gardner. “Her experience is a testament to her qualifications to serve on the federal bench, and the opportunity to meet with her provided me further confirmation of that. I applaud the progress made to fill the vacancy and look forward to working toward Regina’s confirmation.”
Senator Burr Statement on the White House’s Nomination for the Eastern District Judge
(Republican - North Carolina)
Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) made the following statement on the announcement that the President nominated Patricia Timmons-Goodson to serve on the Eastern District Court of North Carolina:
“Several years ago, when this seat first became vacant, I worked with former Senator Kay Hagan, other interested members of Congress, and the President to fill the vacancy in the Eastern District. After the agreement had been made, the President declined to honor it. I remain disappointed that the President broke our agreement. I’m even more disappointed that the White House has chosen to double down by making a brazenly political nomination, and without consulting either of North Carolina’s Senators. This is particularly discouraging considering my long history of working with and supporting President Obama’s nominations in North Carolina. I supported, and in some cases even recommended for consideration, the President’s nominations of Judge Loretta Biggs, Judge Catherine Eagles, Judge James Wynn, Judge Max Cogburn and Judge Albert Diaz. I have always worked in good faith with the White House on North Carolina nominees, and expect the same respect in return. It is regrettable that the White House has chosen a different path. This transparent attempt to turn the Eastern District vacancy into an election season stunt is unacceptable, and I will not support a new nomination in North Carolina from this Administration.”
Sen. Grassley on 7th Circuit nominee Donald Schott
(Republican - Iowa)
Interviewed briefly in a Capitol hallway this week, Judiciary Chairman Sen. Charles Grassley said he thought Schott would get a hearing this year. But asked whether that would lead to a floor vote on his nomination, Grassley said, "It depends on when the Thurmond-Leahy rule kicks in."
TN Sens. quoted after Republicans delay vote on Memphis judicial nominee’s confirmation
(Republican - Tennessee)
After Senate Republicans refused to let Obama's judicial nominees go forward on Tuesday, both Corker and Alexander reiterated their support for Stanton.
"While Senator Corker does not control the floor schedule and which judicial nominees are brought up for confirmation, he remains supportive of Mr. Stanton," Corker's office said. "The senator, who is not a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, introduced Mr. Stanton to the committee when it met to consider his nomination last September and has encouraged his colleagues to support his confirmation."
Alexander's office also noted that he told the Judiciary Committee that Tennessee "is fortunate to have such a well-qualified nominee" and that he would vote to confirm Stanton "if Majority Leader McConnell brings him to the floor for a vote."
Republican Senators from 13 States Urge Immediate Action to Fill Their Judicial Vacancies (CO, ID, IN, KS, NE, ND, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, WI) (April 21, 2016)
(Republican - Colorado, Utah, Texas, Tennessee, South Carolina, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Oklahoma, Kansas, North Dakota, Nebraska, Wisconsin)
Senator Lankford Supports Oklahomans for US District Court
(Republican - Oklahoma)
Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of two nominees for the US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, Judge Suzanne Mitchell and Scott Palk.
“Suzanne’s and Scott’s background and work in Oklahoma make them uniquely qualified to serve our state as federal judges,” said Lankford. “I believe they are devoted to public service and will uphold both the rule of law and integrity of the court. I ask my Senate colleagues to confirm their nominations.”
Since January 2015, Lankford worked to fill the two vacancies on the US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma. On June 5, 2015, Lankford jointly submitted with Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK) Palk and Mitchell to the White House for consideration and they were officially nominated by the President on December 16, 2015.