Democrats are pulling their hair out over this
I suspect Feinstein was just as worried about Barrett’s age and resume as she was her Catholicism. Barrett is in her mid 40s and counts a clerkship with the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia among her past jobs. She’s a strong conservative who will fill an important seat for a very long time. The same can be said of Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen, who Trump nominated to yet another vacancy in the 6th Circuit.
Young, Scalia-trained additions to the federal bench have Democrats pulling their hair out.
President Trump has made 14 nominations for current or future circuit court vacancies, with three already confirmed (Kevin Newsom of Alabama, another strong conservative, was confirmed last month). Trump is outpacing President Barack Obama in circuit court confirmations and overall judicial nominations at this point in their presidencies. Sources in the White House tell me to expect more waves of conservative judicial nominations this fall.
While Trump faces trials and tribulations on other policy matters, he’s absolutely nailing his judicial appointments. Obama appointed about 40% of the federal judiciary by the time he left office, while Bush 43 appointed just over one-third of it. Obama’s appointees were, in many cases, extremely liberal, ideologically driven people who dragged their circuits drastically to the left. Presidents have enormous impact on the judiciary, especially if their party controls the Senate for some part of their term.
If President Trump’s first year in office is any indication, conservatives should be very happy with this reshaping of the federal bench, particularly at the appellate level. Undoing the damage done to the appellate courts by Obama is a key reason why Trump must do everything he can to maintain Republican control of the US Senate in the 2018 midterm election.
If Feinstein’s reaction to Barrett is any indication, Democrats would love nothing more than to shut down the Trump Train’s drop-offs at the federal courthouse.
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