A “right-wing takeover of the court system” has been “the objective of every Republican president since Ronald Reagan,” Paul Butler writes in the Guardian. Donald Trump has distinguished himself from his GOP predecessors “only by his success at transforming the federal bench so early in his term.”
From the Guardian:
Donald Trump has nominated an unprecedented number of judges to federal courts since his appointment. These are making steady progress through the Senate confirmation process and yet they have escaped the sort of scrutiny that Trump normally attracts. This is unfortunate, because the impact of Trump’s court picks will be profound, and will help reshape American society for years to come.
Of the nearly 60 judges he has nominated, only one is black, one is Hispanic and three are women. The rest are white men. All of these people are conservatives who will be interpreting and helping (re)write the law for decades.
The claim that Trump has not accomplished much in his first year in office is dead wrong. He is fashioning the federal court system of Steve Bannon’s dreams. The president has nominated judges who will cut back the civil rights of racial minorities and LGBT people, expand the power of police and prosecutors, restrict the ability of women to obtain abortions and favor big corporations over consumers.
Trump took office facing a backlog of 114 judicial appointments – the most of any president since Bill Clinton. This was not a coincidence but rather the product of a calculated project by Republicans in the US Congress to deny Barack Obama his authority to appoint judges. In a bold power play, Senate Republicans, who must confirm judicial nominees, simply refused to vote on most of Obama’s selections during the last year of his presidency. They were, in effect, waiting for Trump.
Read the rest here.