Bench Memos

Law & the Courts

Judicial-Nominations Update

Last week, the Senate voted to confirm Joseph Bianco and Michael Park — President Trump’s 38th and 39th circuit court judges, respectively — since Inauguration Day. By comparison, only 18 circuit court judges had been confirmed by this point in President Obama’s first term.

Also last week, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell filed for cloture to end debate on the nomination of Ken Lee, one of President Trump’s currently pending nominees to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The Senate is also expected to vote this week on the confirmations of two district court nominees.

Here is a full update on the status of President Trump’s federal judicial nominations:

Current and known future vacancies:  158

Courts of Appeals:  8

District/Specialty Courts*: 150

Pending nominees for current and known future vacancies:  57

Courts of Appeals: 3

District/Specialty Courts*:  54

* Includes the Court of Federal Claims and the International Trade Court

Court of Appeals Nominees Awaiting Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings

Nominee (Circuit) Original Nomination Date Days Since Original Nomination Both Blue Slips Returned? Judiciary Committee Hearing Date
Dan Bress (9th) 2/6/2019 96 No Not yet scheduled

 Court of Appeals Nominees Awaiting Senate Judiciary Committee Votes

Nominee (Circuit) Original Nomination Date Days Since Original Nomination Judiciary Committee Hearing Date
None

 Court of Appeals Nominees Awaiting Senate Floor Votes

Nominee (Circuit) Nomination Date Days Since Original Nomination Date Reported to Senate Floor
Dan Collins (9th) 11/13/2018 181 4/4/2019
Ken Lee (9th) 11/13/2018 181 4/4/2019

Nominees Awaiting Floor Votes:40

Courts of Appeals: 2

District/Specialty Courts: 38

Days Pending

  • # of pending nominees originally nominated > 600 days ago: 1
  • # of pending nominees originally nominated > 500 days ago: 3
  • # of pending nominees originally nominated > 400 days ago: 5
  • # of pending nominees originally nominated > 300 days ago: 23

Nominees Confirmed by the Senate during the 116th Congress: 19

Supreme Court: 0

Courts of Appeals: 9

District/Specialty Courts: 10

Nominees Confirmed by the Senate since Inauguration Day: 104

Supreme Court: 2

Courts of Appeals: 39

District/Specialty Courts: 63

Carrie Severino is chief counsel and policy director to the Judicial Crisis Network.

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