What number of vacant judgeships quantifies a judicial crisis? In 2012, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said that number was 35. In 2015, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., said that number was 15. In 2016, Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said it was 62. That number under President Trump? Somewhere north of 130—the current number of vacancies. As Heritage founder Dr. Ed Feulner notes in a recent Washington Times column, liberals in the Senate are content to “reject any end-of-the-year deal on judicial nominations, signaling they’ll toe a tougher line on court appointments amid heavy pressure from the left.”

Assembling an impressive collection of quotes, Dr. Feulner exposed senatorial hypocrisy on the subject of judicial obstruction. For example, in 2014, Sen. Leahy declared that such “obstruction is not worthy of the Senate, and the resulting judicial vacancies do great harm to the judicial system.” Leahy’s words are still true, regardless of who’s president.

Dr. Feulner has fought for decades to promote conservative values, and continues to work to assure that the judiciary works as the framers of the Constitution intended. Thank you for supporting Heritage as we hold elected officials accountable.

Read Dr. Feulner’s Washington Times column here. 

What should be done to see that President Trump’s nominees receive a fair and timely vote in the Senate?

Comments (28)

Ronald Lockard - January 11, 2019

Republicans should change the Senate rules (Pelosi is doing it in the House).

Sandra J Elliot - January 11, 2019

There are more than enough cases of criminals committing violent crimes multiple times while awaiting incarceration hearings to make OUR case. The time is now for the Senate to employ Schumer’s tactics that bypass all rules except for majority votes to secure judicial appointments. Are the Republicans waiting for Democrats to also seize the Senate? -0- accomplishments in repealing Obama-care resulted in us losing the House. This crisis, though not of “6% of the US Economy” scale, certainly impacts law enforcement capability and endangers citizens’ health and security.

Victor Andrews - January 11, 2019

Nuclear option!

rwfjr - January 11, 2019

The president needs to stop tweeting and hire a team of speechwriters who can articulate why these judicial appointments matter. Then he should stick to the script: reason with people, don’t bully them.

Philip Bourgeois - January 11, 2019

I do not believe that there is any remedy for dealing with the Democrat obstructionism that has existed since President Trump was elected. It is the main reason why there is such a backlog on qualified judicial nominees. The filibusters and extended debates should be cut off. Allow for debate for a much shorter timeframe and take a vote on these nominees. It is time for this type of obstruction that prevents any real business from being done…to end!

Wayne Glover - January 11, 2019

Put the potential judges up for a vote daily! May delay other businesses; however, what more important…

Kathleen Parr - January 11, 2019

You Must Impose the Nuclear Option…
We can’t afford to lose one seat …
We really can’t afford to lose the constitution…Keep this thought in mind…
Jesus was crucified on the Cross…the shadow of the Cross fell upon the Donkeys back…every donkey has the cross laying across his back…and the Donkey will only take one step forward if he Trusts the person who is leading him …distrust the Donkey wont move…
In one moment …with a blink of an eye God spoke thru a donkey…I am offended because of the misuse and abuse of the symbolic Donkey the Democrats Use they should take down the Donkey…

Gary W Magelssen - January 11, 2019

It seems to me that there should be written requirements for any person applying for a judicial appointment and that a team of 5 to 10 members of the Senate should decide in a week or less if the Presidents nominee qualifies. If the nominee qualifies he should immediately start work.

Lloyd Lapore ,Jr. - January 11, 2019

No doubt about it , they’re ability to wreak havoc is astounding !
The only thing they’re afraid of is being voted out of office ! Let’s see how much HEAT they can really handle !

Roger Hanson - January 11, 2019

I can’t understand how the Senate picked up seats and yet the minority Democrats seem to control the Senate, nominee’s not being put through. Apparently with Nancy in charge there will be no accountability and no one can stop that behavior.

Michael wiant - January 11, 2019

Sen McConnell needs to invoke the nuclear option. Harry Reid had no hesitation doing so. The GOP should be as ready. They may never have a better opportunity, given how criminal the left is.

Patrick Meehan - January 11, 2019

First, develop a process that creates an order of merit list similar to those used by the military to determine promotions and OPM to fill vacancies Bottom line, anyone on the list is capable of filling the vacancies as they arise. “Regrettable” decisions or selections will manifest themselves in a history of overturned judgements by higher courts and/or public disapproval or outcry. In this way,
mpeachment is taken out of political hands and poor performers are removed by their own incompetence or behavoir. Second, ensure no majority leader or committee chair has the power to disrupt or block the process.. Our political Leaders have demonstrated time and time again that they are incapable of making altruistic decisions that benefit anyone but themselves. Tney always make great sound bites for their campaign bumper stickers but tell the people they are supposed to only that they can “go to …….,!

James White - January 11, 2019

Reform the filibuster. If that is impractical in this period of judicial vacancy, modify 3/5ths rule so simple majority is sufficient. It’s high time for some Republican backbone!!

STAN BEACHY - January 11, 2019

Keep exposing the Democrats for their blatant hypocrisy and partisanship. I still trust the American people to see this and throw the Democrats out!!

Kimberly Tancrede - January 12, 2019

Fine those who are not doing their job! Give them deadlines!

David Valcore - January 12, 2019

It appears Repbulican senate leadership does not have the will and backbone to use the tools at their disposal. I think we need to start with replacement of the Senate leadership.

suzie sween - January 12, 2019

I believe in progress not obstruction and giving EVERY elected official a vote…not just the elite.
When Bills, amendments and JUDGES are presented, they deserve an up or down vote, ALL these should have a TIME LIMIT to hold that vote. Majority of the votes should rule- filibuster is a pathetic political game keeping WE THE PEOPLE hostage. Republican majority DO YOUR JOB and stop disappointing your supporters.

John Parker - January 12, 2019

Offer Dr. Feulner’s articles for publication in the New York Times and Washington Post

Ila Wyatt - January 12, 2019

We really need to clean house of the RHINOS. There are so many things they should have done already. If nothing will get accomplished, let Americans pray for God to intervene and give us Senators and Representatives who will back President Trump.

William Vogel - January 12, 2019

The obstruction of conservative judges is the single most important issue facing our nation. The Senate should adopt rules that require a 51% majority of members to approve a nominee after no more than a week review/hearing of the judge. Get this fixed!!!!

DR DWIGHT SANDERS SE - January 12, 2019

god do not bless those!

Elizabeth Craine - January 12, 2019

I believe that Mitch McConnel should hold the Senate’s feet to the fire. They have that 60 hr rule for nominations. So I believe he should tell them they are going to debate 8 hrs a day. Monday through Sat until the nominations are voted on. But McConnell could actually change the rule and limit the debate time and get these judges confirmed.

H J Raehn - January 13, 2019

Both sides used the nuclear option; Harry Reid did so for the first time in 2013 except for Supreme Court nominations. It was exercised again in 2017 by Mitch McConnell for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch. If the Democrats were in power today, they most certainly would invoke the nuclear option. In my opinion, the former 60-vote rule will not longer be exercised, so Mitch should invoke the nuclear option as soon as possible which should be the highest priority during the partial shutdown of the government. . .

Mike Vitullo - January 14, 2019

nuclear option or national emergency or executive order. What happened to senate majority? The Pres must be helped by HF and JW together. I support James White’s comment also.

Paul N Kroeger - January 16, 2019

Mrs. Pelosi’s new rules suggest she is interested in becoming a demagogue. The judicial crisis must be solved through new rules which insure appointments without delay. Perhaps her demagoguery can be short-circuited by stiff rules on judicial appointments. If not, perhaps we can bring back the pillory just for her.

Kayleen Winkler - January 18, 2019

Perhaps the salaries of the congress should be put on hold as long the the government is shut down. The shut down should affect the lawgivers also. As long as the courts are not opperating because there is no judge, no law can be passed until the courts are operating. The back long is disgraceful.

William Coates - January 19, 2019

McConnell can change the rules just like Pelosi did, if he is willing to be an actual conservative instead of a campaign-time conservative. But that’s the trouble with too many Republican senators – they love those lobbyist $$$$ from the liberal corporations, and the wealthy donors with pro-choice wives.

John Cannon - January 22, 2019

Use the Nuclear option about all that can be done!

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