This Week on

August 19, 2011

Following the Senate’s failure to vote on 20 “perfectly qualified nominees” before leaving for the August recess, The Washington Post editorial board this week slammed the “gamesmanship” as “not only frustrating but also destructive.” The board continued, “The seat-saving obstructionism that accompanies an election year and brings confirmations to a standstill now looms.” The Atlantic’s Andrew Cohen echoed this sentiment last week, and followed up with a second article on those federal nominees the Senate has confirmed. He notes that once given the opportunity of a vote, 87 percent “came onto the bench with no meaningful opposition on the floor of the Senate.”

The White House released an infographic on its blog touting the Administration’s historic successes but also noting the historic delays in judicial nominations. Although the administration has shown an “unprecedented commitment to expanding the racial, gender and experiential diversity of the men and women who enforce our laws and deliver justice,” the blog entry asserts, “the delays these nominees are encountering on Capitol Hill are equally unprecedented.” The Blog of Legal Times reports on the infographic and accompanying statement as a signal that the White House is making confirmation of judges a “top priority.”

Also in the Blog of the Legal Times, David Ingram summarizes recent changes within the Obama administration. He identifies Chris Kang as the lawyer responsible for running the judicial nominations process and reports that Leslie Kiernan began work on Monday as a Deputy Counsel to the President; judicial nominations are included in her portfolio.

The Latest from "In The News"

  • “White House Counsel Brings in New Staff,” from The Legal Times
  • New Members Join Panel That Vets Judges,” from The Jacksonville Daily Record
  • White House Counsel Brings in New Staff,” from The Legal Times

The Latest from "Recommended Reading"

  • “New Blood at Federal Circuit,” from
  • “Goodwin Liu, President Obama, and Judicial Diversity,” from Asian Pacific American for Progress Blog
  • “Restore the president's appointment power,” from