Yesterday, the US Senate confirmed Greg Katsas to the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. In terms of impact, the D.C. Circuit is probably the most important circuit in the nation as virtually all regulatory issues end up before that court. The vote was 50-48. Joe Manchin of West Virginia voted for Katsas and Republican Sen. John Kennedy voted against him. Kennedy is beginning to show alarming symptoms of the Snow-Collins Syndrome as he is pledging to vote against an upcoming nominee.
Katsas is a good choice because he holds the right views on a lot of important issues and all the right people hate him.
This is the ninth appeals court judge confirmed since Trump took office. By this time Obama had had three confirmed.
Give the devil his due on this. McConnell is forcing these votes and Chuck Grassley has kneecapped the Democrats by severely restricting the impact of the whole “blue slip” nonsense. At first, Grassley announced the blue slip process was advisory only on circuit court judges and now he’s said that a blue slip on a district court nomination doesn’t prevent either a hearing or a vote.
At this rate, Donald Trump’s signature accomplishment is going to be stocking the courts with young, conservative, originalist jurists who will shape American jurisprudence for the next forty years.