Senate

McConnell tees up Trump judicial pick following Supreme Court vote

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday teed up a vote on a district court nominee shortly after the Senate confirmed Trump pick Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.

McConnell's move will set up the Senate to take up James Knepp II's nomination to be a judge for the northern district of Ohio once it returns to Washington on Nov. 9.

The Senate left town on Monday night for its election recess after confirming Barrett. No votes are expected to occur for roughly two weeks.

But Republicans have placed a premium on confirming President Trump's judicial picks. Including Barrett, the Senate has confirmed 220 court nominees. That includes three Supreme Court justices, 53 influential circuit court nominees and 162 district judges.

Because Democrats in 2013 nixed the filibuster for district and circuit court nominations and Republicans nixed it for Supreme Court nominees in 2017, judicial nominations can be confirmed with only a simple majority.

McConnell, in particular, has stressed that he views the courts as the party's best chance at having a long-term impact on the direction of the country. And he touted the GOP's work on confirming judges during the fight this week over Barrett.

"We made an important contribution to the future of this country. A lot of what we've done over the last four years will be undone sooner or later. ... They won't be able to do much about this for a long time to come," he said.

Outbrain