TBA Law Blog

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Jun 4, 2014

The number of federal court judicial vacancies has declined significantly in recent weeks after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stepped up the pace for their confirmation, taking advantage of a rules change last year, GavelGrab reports. There are 67 judicial vacancies, compared to 94 at the beginning of last November, before the Senate changed its rules to eliminate the filibuster as a procedural tool that could be used to block most judicial nominees. The confirmations are permitting President Obama to expand his imprint on the federal courts. When he took office, judges appointed by Republican presidents comprised a majority of 10 of the nation’s 13 circuit courts. Today, by contrast, judges selected by Democratic presidents make up a majority on nine circuit courts.