White House Returns to Confrontation on Judicial Nominations

President Bush refuses to build on bipartisan agreement


Glenn Sugameli, 202-667-4500 x 221


Cat Lazaroff, 202-667-4500 x 213

Today, President Bush plans to repeatedly condemn the Senate for refusing to unilaterally confirm 100 percent of his nominees for lifetime seats on federal courts. President Bush’s speeches come one day after the Senate fulfilled a historic bipartisan agreement to confirm 25 of his less-controversial judicial nominees.

The Senate has now confirmed more than 200 of President Bush’s judicial nominees to our federal courts of appeals, district courts, and federal claims courts. On a handful of controversial judicial nominees, all of whom have extreme records as anti-environmental ideologues, the Senate has refused to cut off debate. A few others have been blocked by objections from home-state Senators.

“Unfortunately, President Bush could not wait for the ink to dry on this historic agreement before returning to the failed politics of confrontation in selecting the lifetime members of our third branch of government — our independent judiciary,” said Earthjustice Senior Legislative Counsel Glenn Sugameli. “We urge President Bush to reconsider and to build on the recent agreement in a way that respects the Senate’s constitutional advice-and-consent role.”

In July 2003, a broad coalition of conservation, civil rights, women’s rights and other groups, including Earthjustice, issued a statement declaring that, “A bipartisan commission similar to the one that already exists in Wisconsin is the only way to amicably and fairly resolve the current differences between the White House and Michigan’s Senators.”

“This is still the best solution to resolve this issue,” said Sugameli, who heads Earthjustice’s Judging the Environment project, which reviews federal judicial nominations on behalf of the environmental community.


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