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Friday, September 08, 2006 

National Review: Move on Judges

The editors of the National Review are pushing the Senate Republicans to confirm judicial nominees. They believe that the Republicans are in dire need of a boost going into the midterm elections. The judiciary has always been an issue that gets the Republican base fired up. A few confirmations and maybe a few fights would do a lot of good.

Losses in the Senate could make future confirmations difficult...
Should Republicans lose a few Senate seats in November, as is expected by even the most optimistic prognosticators, emboldened Democrats will probably block action on judicial nominees during the lame-duck session. Then, in the next Congress, a smaller Republican majority will be unlikely to have enough votes to block Democratic filibusters.
The Democrats have been successful enough already in blocking judicial nominees. With more votes in the Senate, they will be even more successful.

The editors go through a list of nominees and explain why they should be confirmed and why their confirmations will help the Republicans. The nominee that I'm most interested in is Michael Wallace...
Finally, Republicans should schedule a hearing in September on the nomination of Michael Wallace to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. This will be a chance to hold the ABA accountable for the indefensible "not qualified" rating it gave Wallace despite acknowledging his "highest professional competence." The ABA committee responsible for that rating was headed by an old and bitter adversary of the nominee, and its finding that he lacks the requisite "judicial temperament" was nothing more than a political hatchet job. It is grounds for Republicans to end the ABA's privileged role in judicial nominations, and should not stand in the way of Wallace's prompt approval.
I have written about the horrible treatment that Wallace has received from the ABA. If the Senate Republicans have any spine left, they will push hard for a vote on Wallace and tell the ABA what they can go do with themselves. Anything less than that will result in a much less friendly environment next year. Confirmations will be worse than they are now, if you can imagine that. They may be very bad, like this.

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