by Samantha Berkovits
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has filed a cloture motion to force a vote on the nomination of Michael A. Shipp to be U.S. District Judge for the District of New Jersey. Reid filed the motion after Sen. Rand. Paul (R-Ky.) refused to consent to a vote on Shipp -- a political move to push for a vote on wholly unrelated legislation to halt aid to Pakistan, according to Roll Call. The cloture vote is scheduled for July 23.
Another nominee to the District of New Jersey, Kevin McNulty, was confirmed by the Senate this week by an overwhelming majority of 91-3. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) took the opportunity to give a floor speech venting frustrations about the obstruction that has interfered with filling the unprecedented number of vacancies remaining on the federal bench.
Four nominees to district court vacancies in California, Pennsylvania and New York were reported out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Two would replace judges who were recently confirmed to seats on appeals courts.