McConnell says he has enough votes to go nuclear, ram more unqualified judges through Senate faster
When it comes to ramming Donald Trump’s judges through the Senate, there are simply no more rules. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has made sure of that. He has completely steamrolled over the Democrats ignoring their opposition to nominees and allowing bogus confirmation hearings held during recess in which nominees have been approved with as few as two senators even attending. Now he’s preparing go “nuclear” again, this time significantly cutting back on debate time for nominations on the Senate floor.
According to CNN sources, McConnell told his conference in Tuesday’s closed-door lunch that he has the votes necessary to make the change. It’s likely to happen after next week’s congressional recess. The proposal will cut back debate time from 30 hours to just two for district court judges and non- cabinet executive branch nominees. Demonstrating a degree of hypocrisy only achievable by McConnell, he says that Democrats have engaged in “mindless obstruction” Trump nominees and have forced his hand.
Senate rules committee chairman Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican, sponsored the proposal in committee, where it passed last month on a party-line vote. “Presidents deserve to have their teams in place,” Blunt said. “Never before have we seen the level of obstruction in the confirmation process in the first two years of a presidency.” At least Blunt had the honesty to qualify that statement with the “first two years” part. Because the last six years of President Barack Obama’s tenure really took that cake.
Of course these rules will still be in place 2021 when we hopefully have a Democratic Senate and White House. Let’s just make sure current Democratic senators remember this moment and reward McConnell and his fellow Republicans by using them to expand the federal courts with lots of new judges.