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Sen. Grassley demands re-vote on 9th Circuit judge nomination

Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) late Tuesday demanded that the Senate vote again on the confirmation of Andrew Hurwitz to be a U.S. Circuit Judge for the 9th Circuit, and said he was not aware that Senate Democrats were planning to ask for a speedy voice vote on the nomination.

Grassley spoke a few hours after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) asked that all debate time be yielded back, and that Hurwitz be approved by unanimous consent. No objection was raised, and Hurwitz was quickly approved by voice vote.

A furious Grassley spoke just before 6 p.m., and said he was not told that this might occur, that he had intended to speak more on the nomination, and that he wanted a roll call vote.

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"All the business of the Senate is based upon trust between one senator and another," Grassley said on the Senate floor. "When the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee isn't notified of this action or any other senator notified of this action, it seems to me that that trust has been violated.

"And I won't be satisfied that that trust has been restored unless there's some action taken to have a roll call vote on this nomination."

Grassley said he was "shocked and disappointed" to learn that Hurwitz was voice-voted, and said it is "quite irregular," given that nearly all circuit court judges have been approved by a roll-call vote.

"Typically, members are informed of such actions in advance," he added. "I was not so informed, and I'm ranking member of the Judiciary Committee."

Senate Democrats on Monday said they expected that debate on Hurwitz would be cut short, allowing a Tuesday vote. But Grassley said he had no intention of yielding back his time, and wanted to speak more about the nominee.

On Monday, Grassley called on members to oppose Hurwitz based on his rulings in a death penalty case and an abortion case that Grassley said showed he saw these issues through a political lens.

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