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Judicial Nominations

CAC reviews the records of federal judicial nominees and, when appropriate, takes a position in support of or in opposition to Senate confirmation.

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Judicial Vacancies and the D.C. Circuit

The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is generally considered to be the Nation’s second most important court, after the Supreme Court.  This is because the D.C. Circuit has exclusive jurisdiction over disputes involving numerous federal laws and regulations, and is responsible for resolving critically important cases involving national security, environmental protection, employment discrimination, food and drug safety, separation of powers, and the decisions of a wide array of administrative agencies.  Congress has authorized 11 judgeships for this court; currently, however, three of those 11 judicial seats are vacant. (READ MORE.)

Think Tank

The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is generally considered to be the Nation’s second most important court, after the Supreme Court.  This is because the D.C. Circuit has exclusive jurisdiction over disputes involving numerous federal laws and regulations, and is responsible for resolving critically important cases involving national security, environmental protection, employment discrimination, food and drug safety, separation of powers, and the decisions of a wide array of administrative agencies.  

CAC’s latest Issue Brief, released on August 4, 2011, (and updated periodically there after) focuses on the unprecedented, slow pace of judicial confirmations in the Senate. At a time when caseloads in our federal courts are at a record high, the Senate’s confirmation process for judicial nominees has failed to keep pace with new judicial vacancies. This has stretched the federal judiciary, already overextended, close to its breaking point. While the number of judicial vacancies typically increases at the beginning of a new presidency, a rapid decline usually follows. The Obama Presidency has seen that trend broken. Never before has the number of vacancies risen so sharply and remained so high for so long during a President’s term. For 763 straight days there have been more than 80 vacancies on the federal bench, and there is no end in sight.