Recommended Readings

07/21/2014 – New Study: Judicial Vacancies Delay Cases and Create Unmanageable Workloads, Judges Say
Despite the recent uptick in judicial nominee confirmations over the last few months, judicial vacancies are causing significant case delays and creating unmanageable workloads for judges in district courts, according to a new Brennan Center for Justice study out today. read full story

07/18/2014 – At Long Last, Justice for Ronnie White
In Congress, as in life, circumstances seldom collide to allow correction of a glaring injustice. Yet that is what happened in the Senate on Wednesday, when the chamber confirmed Ronnie White for a seat on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. read full story

07/18/2014 – All Americans Benefit From Senate Rules Reform
What do Richard Boulware, a federal judge in Nevada; Nina Pillard, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit; and Melvin Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, have in common? read full story

07/16/2014 – With A Rules Change For A Lever, Senate Ends Judge’s 17-Year Wait
The Senate has voted 53 to 44 to confirm Ronnie White for a federal court judgeship in Missouri, 17 years after he was first nominated by President Bill Clinton. read full story

07/07/2014 – Harry Reid Threatens To Revisit ‘Nuclear Option’ On Filibuster Rules
In his first remarks after the July 4 holiday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) on Monday threatened to revisit the so-called nuclear option to make further changes to the filibuster rules. read full story

07/07/2014 – Reid: GOP Using ‘Emergency Break’ to Slow Senate
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) accused Republicans of trying to slow Senate consideration of bipartisan legislation and President Obama’s nominees. read full story

07/04/2014 – No Judge, No Justice
Federal judges have long been pawns in political chess games. Regardless of political party, presidents and home-state senators are supposed to work closely to agree on qualified nominees for vacancies. In the current hyper-partisan gridlock of Washington, however, the nomination and confirmation process has virtually ground to a halt, leaving Texas with more unfilled seats on federal benches than any other state. read full story

07/02/2014 – Tribes Write President Asking for American Indian Woman on Supreme Court
A letter was sent to President Barack Obama this week in support of the appointment of the first Native American woman to the federal bench, and his historic visit to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. read full story

07/02/2014 – Texas Republicans Stall Court Nominations, Create Judicial Emergency
With so many issues before the court, judicial nominations should be a growing concern for every American. Yet in a level of unprecedented obstructionism, Republicans are playing politics with our system of justice. read full story

07/02/2014 – How Many Judicial Confirmations Are Due to the Filibuster Rules Change?
The July 4th congressional recess’s pause in 2014’s record pace of judicial confirmations is a good time to explore the reason for the upsurge. read full story

07/01/2014 – Elizabeth Warren Taps Corporate Attorney For Judicial Slot, Despite Calls For Professional Diversity
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) made a strong case earlier this year for the need for more professional diversity on the federal bench. The judiciary is stacked with corporate attorneys, she has said, and it's time to make room for judges with backgrounds representing the public interest. read full story

06/30/2014 – Udall: Supreme Court Wrong To Put Corporate Interests Above Women’s Health
But this decision also reinforces why I'll keep fighting to ensure the Senate fills judicial vacancies with mainstream judges who share the values of New Mexico families -- not corporate interests. read full story

06/24/2014 – How the GOP Took Obstruction to a New Level: Blocking Nominations That Have Unanimous Support
In 2014, proud guardian of gridlock Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans have taken their obstruction to a new level. read full story

06/18/2014 – How an Obama Nominee Can Still Stall Out in the Senate
It's been months since the Obama administration nominated Michael Boggs to serve on Georgia's U.S. District Court, and nearly a month since he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee. And he still hasn't gotten a vote. read full story

06/17/2014 – Obama’s Most Enduring Gay Rights Achievement
On Tuesday, the Senate confirmed three more of President Barack Obama’s judicial nominees to the federal bench, where they will have lifetime tenure as district court judges. read full story

06/17/2014 – Kirk, No; Durbin Yes on Confirming Yandle for Illinois Judgeship
he usually collaborative process between Sen. Dick Durbin D-Ill. and Sen. Mark Kirk R-Ill. fell apart on Tuesday, with Kirk voting against confirming attorney Staci Yandle to be a federal judge in the Southern District of Illinois. read full story

06/17/2014 – Obama Leaving His Mark On Judiciary As Senate Confirms Gay, Black Judges
The Senate made history on Tuesday with its vote to confirm Darrin Gayles to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. read full story

06/17/2014 – A Historic Day for Our Judiciary
This morning, the Senate confirmed three federal judges. On the one hand, they are not unique; like all of the President’s judges and judicial nominees, they have the necessary intellect, experience, integrity, and temperament. read full story

06/16/2014 – Judicial Vacancies in Texas Among Highest in US
The number of federal judicial vacancies in Texas is among the highest in the nation and the problem is compounded by budget cuts and a growing volume of felony cases that are being delayed, federal officials say. read full story

06/16/2014 – Filibuster Weakened, Senate OK’ing Judges Faster
Seven months after curbing filibusters, Democrats are aggressively pushing President Barack Obama's judicial nominees through the Senate, speeding the pace of confirmations and shrinking vacancies on the federal bench to their lowest level since days after Obama took office. read full story

06/15/2014 – Texas Federal Judges Sound Alarm Over Empty Judicial Posts
Texas judges cheered the U.S. Senate confirmation last month of Judge Gregg Costa for the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the highest tier of judges below the Supreme Court. read full story

06/13/2014 – New SF Federal Judge Has His Own Take on Roberts’ ‘Balls and Strikes’
San Francisco’s newest federal judge was sworn into office Thursday and offered his own version of Chief Justice John Roberts’ comparison of jurists to umpires calling balls and strikes. read full story

06/12/2014 – Tempering Judicial Confirmation Optimism
For Democrats, judicial confirmation news has been getting better. One article—“Obama’s Shocking Success on Judgeships”—tells a rosier story than Obama’s early years of paltry nominations and confirmations, as does another recent article. read full story

06/11/2014 – Embattled Nominee Michael Boggs Held Up As Other Judicial Candidates Moving Forward
The Senate Judiciary Committee is moving forward with a batch of federal judicial candidates for Georgia this week, but one name will be noticeably absent: beleaguered nominee Michael Boggs. read full story

06/10/2014 – Toomey, Casey Should Act to Fill Judicial Vacancies
While Edward G. Smith was recently sworn in as the newest federal judge in the U.S. District Court of Eastern Pennsylvania ("Judge Edward Smith sworn onto federal bench in front of 1,000 in Easton," story, June 7) judicial vacancies still plague the commonwealth. read full story

06/09/2014 – Sen. Whitehouse Remains Mum on Boggs Nomination, Despite Key Role
The Senate Democratic leadership is united in opposition to appointing controversial anti-choice judge Michael Boggs to a federal district court in Georgia. read full story

06/05/2014 – Human Rights Groups Urge Senate Judiciary Committee To Reject Michael Boggs
Progressive groups are piling on opposition to Michael Boggs, President Barack Obama's nominee under attack for his socially conservative record on gay rights, civil rights and abortion. read full story

06/04/2014 – Al Franken Will Vote Against Michael Boggs In Senate Judiciary Committee
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said Wednesday that he will oppose President Barack Obama's beleaguered nominee Michael Boggs for a federal judgeship if he comes up for a vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee. read full story

06/04/2014 – As Senate Runs Out Of Judges To Confirm, Dozens Of Courts Still Sit Empty With No Nominees
For all the stagnation in Congress, there's a constant stream of action on one front: Judicial nominations. read full story

06/04/2014 – Boggs Provides Written Answers to Senators
Members of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee weren't content to interrogate Georgia federal judicial candidate Michael Boggs for nearly two hours at his May 13 confirmation hearing. read full story

06/03/2014 – Left Opposes Federal Judicial Nominee with Anti-Abortion Past
Rachel Maddow reports on how a vote in favor of a public registry of abortion doctors has earned conservative federal judge nominee Michael Boggs the scorn of the American left, and is part of the case being made against his confirmation by the Senate. read full story

06/02/2014 – Pennsylvania Progressives Torpedo Nomination Of Potential GOP Obama Judicial Pick
Progressives in Pennsylvania are claiming victory in sinking a potential deal between their U.S. senators and the White House to advance a Republican judicial nominee aligned with groups opposed to abortion rights, gay rights and gun control. read full story

06/02/2014 – Democrats May Sink Obama’s Judicial Nominees
Democrats and civil rights advocates continue to express concerns over two of President Obama’s federal judicial nominees for Georgia’s northern district, who have suspect civil rights backgrounds. read full story

05/30/2014 – The Vacancy Crisis in the Federal Judiciary: What’s at Stake for Women
There are currently 67 vacancies on the federal district and appellate courts.With over 850 authorized judicial seats, this represents a nearly eight percent vacancy rate. Alarmingly high vacancy rates have persisted for over four years; indeed, the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service recently determined that we are in the longest period of historically high vacancy rates in 35 years. read full story

05/29/2014 – Vermont Christians Urge Patrick Leahy To Oppose Obama Nominee Michael Boggs
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) should expect some visitors at one of his Vermont offices on Friday: Burlington-area Christians plan to drop by to deliver a petition with nearly 20,000 signatures urging him to oppose the confirmation of President Barack Obama's beleaguered judicial nominee Michael Boggs. read full story

05/29/2014 – Old Senate Tradition Lies Behind Controversial Judge’s Nomination
As President Obama continues to take heat for nominating to the federal bench a judge who once wanted to keep the Confederate emblem on the Georgia state flag, the White House says what's partly to blame for the choice is an old Senate tradition. read full story

05/28/2014 – Judicial Nominee Michael Boggs’s Claim of Ignorance of Abortion Debate Rings Hollow
Michael Boggs, President Obama's disastrous nominee for the federal bench in Georgia, strained all credulity when he insisted in his confirmation hearing in the Judiciary Committee that he was unaware of the abortion debate happening all around him as a state legislator. read full story

05/28/2014 – Scholars: Empathy May Be Part of Judicial Decision-Making
New academic research shows that federal appeals court judges are more likely to vote in a more feminist way on cases involving gender issues if they have daughters, according to a NPR report. read full story

05/28/2014 – Michael Boggs Says He Didn’t Know About Abortion Debate That Was Raging All Around Him
Michael Boggs, President Barack Obama's beleaguered judicial nominee, may have some explaining to do to senators already skeptical about his record on abortion rights. read full story

05/27/2014 – Vacancies Threaten the Work of the Federal Courts in Texas
In 1787, when he wrote Federalist Paper #78, Alexander Hamilton observed that the federal judiciary “has no influence over either the sword or the purse” and therefore is the “weakest” of the three branches of government. read full story

05/26/2014 – Reid Hits the Gas on Nominees
The federal judiciary has swung to the left as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has confirmed President Obama’s judicial nominees at a torrid pace in recent weeks. read full story

05/22/2014 – Senate Confirms David Barron, Drone Memo Author, As Federal Judge
The Senate on Thursday confirmed David Barron to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston, overcoming bipartisan opposition over legal memos he authored justifying the use of drones to kill American terrorist suspects overseas. read full story

05/21/2014 – Six Months Later, Filibuster Reform Means Republicans Delay Nominees They Confirm Anyway
It's been six months since Senate Democrats pushed through filibuster reform, a change that Republicans warned would have grave consequences and destroy comity in the refined upper chamber. read full story

05/20/2014 – Driving the Point Home: Judges Matter
As the Supreme Court winds up its term and issues what will likely be several controversial decisions, we are again reminded of the importance of our third branch of government. Too many Americans don't fully grasp how their daily lives can be impacted by the Supreme Court, to say nothing of the impact of lower federal courts. read full story

05/19/2014 – John Lewis: ‘I would vote against the confirmation of Michael Boggs’
This just in from the office of Rep. John Lewis, who has been accused of sending mixed signals on state Court of Appeals Judge Michael Boggs, who is up for an appointment to the federal bench: read full story

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