The Senate returned from recess this week with a flurry of judicial nominations activity. Before leaving for recess, the Senate voted 56-41 in favor of cloture on Michelle Friedland’s nomination to the Ninth Circuit (California). On Monday, the Senate voted to confirm Friedland by a margin of 51-40. In addition to being a former member of the ACS Bay Area Lawyer Chapter Board, she was the 100th woman to be confirmed for a federal judgeship under President Obama. Her confirmation leaves the Ninth Circuit fully staffed for the first time in 22 years.
On Tuesday, the Senate voted to invoke cloture on six district court nominees, and followed up on Wednesday with confirmation votes for all six:
Sheryl H. Lipman, Western District of Tennessee, 58-39 cloture, confirmed 95-0.
Allen Bastian, Eastern District of Washington, 55-41 cloture, confirmed 95-0.
Manish S. Shah, Northern District of Illinois, 57-40 cloture, confirmed 95-0.
Daniel D. Crabtree, District of Kansas, 57-39 cloture, confirmed 94-0.
Cynthia Ann Bashant, Southern District of California, 56-41 cloture, confirmed 94-0.
Jon David Levy, District of Maine, 63-44 cloture, confirmed 75-20.
On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee was scheduled to hold votes on four Florida district court nominees, but they were held over at the request of Committee Republicans. Committee Chair Sen. Leahy (D-Vt.) made a point to note that all of the nominees, who would fill judicial emergencies if confirmed, are supported by Florida Senators Nelson (D) and Rubio (R), yet were being held over without reason. The nominees scheduled for a vote and held over were:
Carlos Eduardo Mendoza, Middle District of Florida.
Darrin P. Gayles, Southern District of Florida.
Paul G. Byron, Middle District of Florida.
Beth Bloom, Southern District of Florida.