By the end of Donald Trump’s term, Trump will have appointed nearly a third of the United States’ district judges. He will have appointed three Supreme Court justices, 53 district judges, 162 district judges, and two judges in the United States International Trade Court.
No president has appointed more judges in his first term than Jimmy Carter, according to a Washington Post report.
This is a deliberate plan by Mitch McConnell, the president of the Senate, who refused to confirm a federal judge and a Supreme Court judge last year during the presidency of Barack Obama, the former president of the United States.
That was the situation when Trump took over, leaving more than a hundred judges vacant.
In all, there are about 850 federal judges in the United States. The judges in question can have a major impact on a wide range of important issues in the United States. These include democracy, human rights, law, and the US Constitution.
At the beginning of Trump’s presidency, he himself said that his choice of judges was the untold story of his presidency.
“Nobody talks about it, but when you think about it … It will have consequences 40 years from now,” Trump said at a cabinet meeting. “A large part of the judiciary will be changed by this government in a very short time.”
Many of the Judges Trump has nominated have been controversial and even incompetent.
Most of the Judges Trump has nominated are white men. Until July was 85 percent of them are white and 76 percent are men.
In his first year in office, 31 percent of Obama’s nominees were white men. The rate was 67 percent for George W. Bush, 38 percent for Bill Clinton, 74 percent for Bush Sr. and 93 percent for Ronald Reagan.
To achieve this, Republicans in the U.S. Senate have had to change rules and disregard traditions.
In 2017, Republicans changed a rule that required 60 votes out of 100 to confirm a nomination to the Supreme Court. Now you just need a traditional majority. Democrats had previously taken similar action regarding nominations for other public offices.
Last year, Republicans also made changes to how much time could be spent debating the nomination of federal judges. The maximum was 30 hours, but Republicans reduced the maximum to two hours for district court nominations.
Republicans then put an end to the tradition that senators could actually veto the nomination of federal judges in their states.
In addition, the chairmen of the Senate Judiciary Committee, first Charles E. Grassley and Lindsey Graham, began to consider several persons who had been nominated to the office of Federal Judge at a committee meeting. Democrats opposed it, saying it would give them less time to look at each other’s nominations.
On top of that, the United States Bar Association has not been allowed to look at the people who have been nominated to the office of the federal judge before they have been nominated. This was done during the presidency of Barack Obama and before.
Unpopular policies reached through the courts
Many issues that Republicans place great emphasis on are in fact unpopular with voters, according to opinion polls. These include abolishing the US health care system (a case will be heard before November 10), reducing environmental protection, and abolishing women’s right to abortion.
Trump himself has stated that the Supreme Court judges he nominates will oppose women’s right to abortion. Amy Coney Barrett declined to answer questions about her views on that and other issues when she attended a meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this month.
Trump has also said that it is possible that the case law that creates the right of American women to abortion, called Roe v. Wade, will be re-examined by the Supreme Court after Barrett takes a seat there.
It is also considered possible that the Supreme Court will be involved in the conduct and results of next week’s presidential election.
Including Barrett, Republicans have appointed 15 of the last 19 Supreme Court justices.
In this context, political scientist Lee Drutman pointed out yesterday that in the past 30 years, the Republican president has won the majority of votes in the West Coast presidential election only once. It was during the second term of George W. Bush, in the 2004 elections.
Among Democrats in the United States, the idea has arisen that the number of judges in the United States Supreme Court will be increased. In this way, it would be possible to restore the balance between the parties. However, Joe Biden, the party’s presidential candidate, has said he does not think it is a good idea and says he intends to set up a special counsel to look into judicial issues in the United States and make proposals for reform if he becomes president.
Democrats have also debated whether to change the rules and traditions in the first place, should they gain a majority in the Senate.
“No,” Mazie Hirono, a Hawaiian Democrat and a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told the Washington Post when asked if Republican senators should be allowed to block judges in their states.
“The rules have changed. Do I look stupid? ”
Richard Blumenthal, who is also on the committee, also said no. Others say this needs to be looked at. An expert interviewed by WP says that many senior judges appointed by Democrats have postponed sitting on a sacred stone in recent years. If Biden wins next week’s election, he could soon have a fairly large number of seats.
Blows on voices of dissatisfaction
Mitch McConnell does not criticize the fact that he has undermined the credibility of the Supreme Court and other courts and made courts a political bone of contention.
“This is something we should be proud of and feel good about,” McConnell said on Sunday. “We have made an important contribution to the future of this country. Much of what we have done will have been taken back before the next election. They will not be able to do much about this for a long time.”
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