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Published On: Wed, Jun 5th, 2013

Republicans battling President Obama over judicial nominations, Obama says ‘Don’t play games’

Tuesday President Obama announced that he is nominating three candidates for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: Patricia Millet, Nina Pillard and Robert Wilkins. Obama went on the offensive after some GOP push back from the Senate, especially questioning why all three at once as normally candidates are nominated one at a time.

President Barack Obama delivers a statement announcing the nomination of three candidates for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, in the Rose Garden of the White House, June 4, 2013. Nominees from left are: Robert Leon Wilkins, Cornelia "Nina" Pillard, and Patricia Ann Millett. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)  .

President Barack Obama delivers a statement announcing the nomination of three candidates for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, in the Rose Garden of the White House, June 4, 2013. Nominees from left are: Robert Leon Wilkins, Cornelia “Nina” Pillard, and Patricia Ann Millett. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)
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“There’s no reason — aside from politics — for Republicans to block these individuals from getting an up or down vote,” Obama said during a ceremony unveiling three nominees for the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C.

Obama also ridiculed Republicans for claiming he is trying to “pack” a court that ranks just below the Supreme Court itself; the president said he is only trying to fill three open slots on an 11-member court that was at full capacity under Republican predecessor George W. Bush.

“It’s important we don’t play games here,” Obama said.

The court, typically considered the second-most important after the Supreme Court, has a fairly conservative makeup.

“The D.C. Circuit is known as the second highest court in the country, and there’s a good reason for that,” the President said. “The judges on the D.C. Circuit routinely have the final say on a broad range of cases involving everything from national security to environmental policy; from questions of campaign finance to workers’ rights. In other words, the court’s decisions impact almost every aspect of our lives.” 

Republicans responded angrily to what they called a blatant attempt to steamroll opposition in Congress. Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, accused Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, of betraying a commitment not to alter Senate rules.

“There’s a culture of intimidation throughout the executive branch,” Mr. McConnell said after the president’s announcement. “There’s also a culture of intimidation here in the Senate.”

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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