Bench Memos

Law & the Courts

White House Misplays Grassley for a Chump

By floating the name of Eighth Circuit judge Jane L. Kelly as a possible Supreme Court nominee, the White House is treating Senate Judiciary Committee Chuck Grassley as though he were a chump. The White House is hoping that because Kelly has worked in Iowa since 1994 and because Grassley supported her 2013 nomination to the Eighth Circuit, Grassley might face an “awkward dilemma,” as a New York Times article puts it, if Obama were to nominate her.

I’m glad (but not at all surprised) to see that Grassley has forcefully rejected this ploy, reiterating his position that no nominee this year (“the person doesn’t matter, see”) will get a hearing. Further:

“You know, one of the questions I will ask them [in any meeting],” he said of the eventual nominee, will be “what they feel about being used as a political pawn.”

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