People For the American Way

PFAW Statement on Mitch McConnell’s Decision to End Senate Term without Acting on Nominees

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 10, 2016

Contact: Laura Epstein or Drew Courtney at People For the American Way

Email: [email protected]

Phone Number: 202-467-4999

In response to the Senate’s decision to end work for the year without addressing the backlog of judicial nominees waiting for action, People For the American Way Executive Vice President Marge Baker released the following statement:

“When Mitch McConnell sent senators home for the holidays last night, they left 25 nominees pending on the Senate floor, all of whom passed the Senate Judiciary Committee with broad bipartisan support. They also refused to act on 29 other nominees on which Committee action has been delayed by Senator Grassley’s ongoing campaign of obstruction, including Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to fill the Supreme Court vacancy that has existed for nearly ten months.

“These nominees are exhibit A in Senate Republicans’ campaign to stoop to any level to play politics with our courts. In a normal year, each and every one of these nominees would have been confirmed without controversy. Instead, Republicans have decided to thumb their noses at the Constitution in an attempt to steal a Supreme Court seat from President Obama. Their obstinance and their obstruction have done real damage to our federal courts, the confirmation process and to the rule of law. No one should forget how disrespectfully Senator McConnell and his caucus have treated President Obama and his nominees; and no one should expect Democrats to acquiesce when President Trump attempts to fill vacancies that only exist because of Republican misconduct.”

People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy.