The U.S. Senate confirmed its 200th federal judge nominated by President Donald Trump on Wednesday, approving Cory Wilson by a narrow 52-48 vote to serve as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
In a statement, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) noted that there are now no vacancies anywhere on the federal appellate bench:
Once we confirm Judge Wilson today, this Senate will have confirmed 200 of President Trump’s nominees to lifetime appointments on the federal bench. And following number 200, when we depart this chamber today, there will not be a single circuit-court vacancy anywhere in the nation for the first time in at least 40 years.
As I’ve said many times, our work with the administration to renew our federal courts is not a partisan or political victory. It is a victory for the rule of law and for the Constitution itself.
Democrats opposed Wilson’s appointment, suggesting that he was a racist because he supported voter ID laws. “Judge Wilson has been an ardent supporter of restrictive voting measures, including voter ID laws that disproportionately harm minority voters, and he has shown a pattern of dismissing legitimate concerns from voting rights groups,” they wrote in a letter quoted by Politico. They also called Wilson’s nomination a “slap in the face to Black Americans.”
As of today, President Trump has nominated almost one in four federal judges, if all 860 federal judgeships are taken into account.
Democrats have discussed countering Trump’s nominations when they take control of the Senate and the White House — whether in 2020 or at a later date — by “packing” the courts through expanding the number of judgeships and filling them with liberal nominees.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His new book, RED NOVEMBER, is available for pre-order. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.