WASHINGTON, D.C., December 22, 2020 – Alliance for Justice issued today a report looking back on the 230+ federal judges that President Trump nominated and that Senate Republicans confirmed. These judges brought backward-looking records on health care, voting rights, executive power, and every other issue important to the general public — records evident in the harmful decisions they’ve issued since being confirmed.
Many lacked even the most basic qualifications of legal experience to serve as judges but were confirmed nonetheless, often along party-line votes. These judges were overwhelmingly white and male, with several filling seats to which President Obama had selected more diverse nominees only to be blocked by Senate Republicans. And Senate Republicans eroded many of the Senate’s “advice and consent” norms to railroad Trump’s nominees through.
As a point of comparison, Trump saw three Supreme Court justices and 54 appeals court judges confirmed during his four years — flipping three circuits to a majority of Republican-nominated judges. That’s compared to just two Supreme Court justice and 55 appeals court judges during Obama’s eight years in office. Trump’s impact on the judiciary will be one of his most lasting and destructive legacies.
Alliance for Justice President Nan Aron issued the following statement:
“This president has done lasting damage to our federal courts with his radical and unqualified nominees, who Senate Republicans were only too happy to rubber-stamp. While we will face the consequences of that damage for decades to come, there are also reasons to be hopeful. We successfully defeated several of Trump’s most egregious nominees, including those who wanted to rip health care away from millions. We brought together the biggest coalitions yet of teachers and health care workers and civil rights groups to defend our courts from this conservative takeover. And as a result of our hard work, progressives are now even more energized around the courts than conservatives.
The Biden administration can begin repairing our courts on day one, fueled by a base ready to prioritize diverse and fair-minded judges that our Building the Bench program has already helped to identify. Trump has shown us exactly what not to do if we want the judiciary to uphold equal justice and the rule of law. We can do better, and we will.”