Just like a bad meal keeps repeating on you, so too does Obama’s nomination of Caitlin Halligan to be a judge on US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit.
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has scheduled a vote tomorrow morning to invoke cloture on the Republican filibuster of Halligan. From the Blog of the Legal Times:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) filed paperwork late Monday to try to defeat a Republican filibuster of Halligan, currently the general counsel of the Manhattan district attorney’s office. Reid will need help from some Republicans, since it takes 60 votes to break the block. If the filibuster is ended, Halligan then would need only 50 votes to be confirmed.
Reid spoke on the Senate floor Tuesday morning, using the 1991 confirmation vote of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas as an example of why Halligan and every judicial nominee should get a confirmation vote without having to overcome a filibuster.
“I was very troubled with Justice Thomas, who was then a circuit court judge, and a decision had to be made by me and many others: should we allow Justice Thomas an up-or-down vote,” Reid said. “The decision was made, yes, he should.”
“He barely made it,” Reid said of the 52-48 vote. “It would have been so easy to stop that nomination, but it would have been the wrong thing to do. As bad as I feel he has been as a jurist, that doesn’t matter.”
The Senate refused to invoke cloture on her nomination in 2011. She was renominated again in 2012 but time ran out on her nomination then. President Obama again renominated Halligan for the third time in January of this year.
Halligan has been opposed by every gun rights organization due to her actions against gun rights while serving as the Solicitor General of New York under then NY Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. She currently the General Counsel in the New York County District Attorney’s Office serving anti-knife DA Cyrus Vance, Jr.
I would urge you to either email or call your two senators ASAP asking them to oppose Halligan’s nomination.
UPDATE: The Washington Post reports that Halligan was again successfully filibustered. The motion to invoke cloture on her nomination only received 51 votes or 9 short of what was needed. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) was the only Republican to vote for cloture.
The Library of Congress’ Thomas page is not showing the results of the roll call vote yet. If Halligan only got 51 votes, this would seem to indicate that some Democrats either didn’t vote or voted against her.
UPDATE II: The roll call vote stats have been posted on the cloture motion. While no Democrats voted against the cloture motion, it appears that eight senators – four Republicans and four Democrats – did not vote.
YEAs —51 Baldwin (D-WI)
NAYs —41 Alexander (R-TN)
Not Voting –