Bench Memos

Bring Back Blue Slips?

I’d be curious what some of the other Bench-posters think of an idea I floated on The Corner a little while back. Basically the idea was to add one element to Frist’s “compromise” proposal: A pledge to respect blue slips from Democratic senators. As I explained here and here, it seems that the one “fairness” argument Democrats have in the judicial nomination fight is that the Republican majority eliminated the ability of home-state senators to block/influence appellate nominations from their states. I should add that I don’t like the blue slip, and preferred proposals to ensure all nominations get voted upon in the future, but it seemed like a reasonable proposal that would address and substantive complaints Democrats might have about changes in the traditional way of handling judicial nominations — and eliminate any argument that the judicial filibuster is justified to make up for those changes.

Jonathan H. Adler — Mr. Adler is an NRO contributing editor and the inaugural Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. His latest book is Marijuana Federalism: Uncle Sam and Mary Jane.

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