Senate clears first circuit judge nominee of 2015

The Senate approved its first circuit judge nomination of the year on Tuesday.

Senators voted 95-0 on Kara Stoll’s nomination to be a U.S. circuit court judge for the federal circuit, making her the first Hispanic woman to be approved for the court.

Speaking ahead of the Senate’s vote, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) called Stoll “superbly qualified.”

{mosads}President Obama first nominated Stoll in November of last year. But Congress adjourned for the year without confirming her, so the White House sent her nomination back to lawmakers in January. She was approved by the Judiciary Committee in April.

Democrats say that Stoll is an example of what they suggest is a slow pace of votes on judicial nominations under the Republican Senate.

“One circuit court nominee in more than six months is an embarrassment. That puts the Senate on pace to confirm fewer than four circuit court nominees this entire Congress,” said Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

The Nevada Democrat argued that Obama’s nominees “aren’t getting a fair shake,” adding that “by any objective measure the Republican Senate is failing in their basic constitutional responsibility to provide advice and consent.”

Democrats argue that by this point in 2007 they had confirmed a greater number of judicial nominees for then-President George W. Bush — 21 — who was also in the final two years of his second term.

Leahy said that Democrats aren’t “asking for anything special but we’re saying it would be kind of nice if Republicans treated Democrats the same way we treated them.”

But in prepared remarks sent out by Sen. Chuck Grassley’s office, the Iowa Republican, and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said that Obama’s nominees are “being treated extremely fairly.”

He added that overall, Obama has had 312 judicial nominees confirmed, compared to 279 nominees for Bush by this point in 2007.

Grassley’s remarks were for the Congressional Record, a daily rundown of legislative action and speeches in Congress. 

Tags Chuck Grassley Harry Reid Patrick Leahy

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