AT: With the midterm elections behind us, it is time for Congress to refocus on the people’s work. It won’t be easy, but congressmen should reject the cynical voices preaching “nothing can be done now, so we should prepare for next year.”
In the Senate, the priority should be the confirmation of all pending judicial nominees.
President Donald Trump has done an excellent job nominating constitutional judges. Helped in no small part by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), the president has confirmed 29 appellate court judges, 53 to the district court and, of course, two Supreme Court Justices. His appellate appointments set a new record for the first two years of a president’s first term.
The Senate has done good work, but this is not the time to let up. The overall number of appointments for President Trump is not a record by any stretch. His 84 confirmations compare to President George W. Bush’s 80 and President Bill Clinton’s 128. In fact, as noted by the Heritage Foundation, there are more judicial vacancies awaiting at this point of President Trump’s term than for the last five presidents — all the way back to President Reagan. There are 122 vacancies.
The Senate has currently 13 appellate nominations pending. Just this week the president announced Neomi Rao to fill the seat left vacant by Justice Kavanaugh at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, often called the second most powerful court of the land. He couldn’t have picked a more exciting choice. In her work at the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Rao has worked on the deregulation efforts that have unleashed the successful economy we are witnessing. She is an intellectual powerhouse in the area of Administrative Law which constitutes a great part of the work handled by the D.C. Circuit. As associate professor of law at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School, she founded the school’s Center for the Study of the Administrative State. read more