Most Red-State Senate Democrats Voting Against Trump Judges

Brett-Kavanaugh, Chuck Schumer

WASHINGTON, DC – President Trump continues to appoint federal appellate judges at a record pace. However, Senate Democrats up for reelection in 2018 in states carried by Trump are mostly voting against those nominees, sharpening the battle lines over one of the nation’s highest-profile political issues heading into a midterm election that will set the course of the next two years.

Senators on Thursday confirmed two more federal judges: Marvin Quattlebaum and Julius Richardson, both for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. With them, President Trump has confirmed 14 appellate judges thus far this year and 26 during his presidency.

That is a record for being 19 months into a presidency. Adding 26 district court judges and one Supreme Court justice results in a total of 53 federal judges.

That total number lags behind recent presidents only because district court judges (district courts are the trial courts) have historically been confirmed unanimously with little or no debate.

By contrast, Senate Democrats are engaging in literally unprecedented obstruction tactics against nominees. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has forced cloture votes – which then allows Democrats to delay another 30 hours before a confirmation vote – for Trump judicial nominees 46 times, more than all the nominees of all 44 previous U.S. presidents combined.

While this unfortunate commentary may not be surprising in the current hyperpartisan climate, it is surprising how many senators facing difficult reelection prospects are joining in the obstruction.

Of the ten senators up for election this November in states President Trump won in 2016:

  • Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only seven out of the 26 appeals judges (27 percent).
  • Sherrod Brown (D-OH) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only five out of the 26 appeals judges (19 percent).
  • Bob Casey (D-PA) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only seven out of the 26 appeals judges (27 percent).
  • Joe Donnelly (D-IN) voted for Gorsuch, but has voted for only 15 out of the 26 appeals judges (58 percent).
  • Heid Heitkamp (D-WI) also voted for Gorsuch, but has voted for only 16 out of the 26 appeals judges (62 percent).
  • Joe Manchin (D-WI) was the third and final Democratic vote for Gorsuch, but has likewise voted for only 16 out of the 26 appeals judges (62 percent).
  • Claire McCaskill (D-MO) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only 12 out of the 26 appeals judges (46 percent).
  • Bill Nelson (D-FL) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only 10 out of the 26 appeals judges (38 percent).
  • Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only seven out of the 26 appeals judges (27 percent).
  • Jon Tester (D-MT) voted against Gorsuch, and has voted for only 11 out of the 26 appeals judges (42 percent).

The issue of judges has been one of the president’s best issues politically, and with Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to Justice Anthony Kennedy’s seat on the Supreme Court, it may become the single most important issue in those ten Senate races across the nation.

Ken Klukowski is senior legal editor for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.

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