Senate must do its job on judicial nominees in 2019
Two years into his presidency, Donald Trump has inflicted unimaginable damage on the federal judiciary .With 85 appointments, including two to the Supreme Court, Trump has packed the courts with conservative ideologues hostile to civil rights. His 30 appointments to the all-important appellate courts broke records and represent more than half of President Obama’s appellate appointments in eight years.
However, more damage can be done because Trump has over 150 vacancies to fill. If the past is prologue, we will see a breathtaking lack of diversity and competence in his future nominees. Trump has nominated only three African-Americans — none to appellate courts and no black women to any court. Six Trump nominees have received “not qualified” ratings from the American Bar Association. Hostility to racial justice appears to have become a prerequisite for nomination. We have seen nominees who have praised the KKK, have strong ties to white supremacists, and some even refusing to acknowledge Brown v. Board of Education was correctly decided. One nominee could not say whether voting discrimination still exists. Several more defended state-sponsored voter suppression around the country.