Bench Memos

D.C. Circuit Nominee Caitlin Halligan

The Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled its confirmation hearing on D.C. Circuit nominee Caitlin Halligan for this Wednesday, February 2.

As I’ve mentioned, President Obama has nominated Halligan to the seat that John Roberts vacated when he became Chief Justice in 2005. That is the same seat to which the superbly qualified and universally acclaimed Peter D. Keisler was nominated in June 2006, only to have his nomination bottled up in committee for the subsequent 2-1/2 years of the Bush presidency.

If committee chairman Patrick Leahy were really concerned about relieving the burden on overworked courts, it wouldn’t make much sense for him to put Halligan’s nomination on the first hearing of the new session. Despite the fact that the Roberts seat has been vacant for so long, it is not on the list of judicial emergencies compiled by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, and no one, so far as I’m aware, contends that D.C. Circuit judges are overworked.

On initial review, Halligan’s record strongly suggests that she’s hard Left on a broad array of issues. I hope to find time to explore Halligan’s record in a series of posts to come.


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