Pillard Approved to Fill Second of Three D.C. Circuit Vacancies

Courts 12.12,13

The Senate voted 51-44 early Thursday morning to confirm Cornelia “Nina” Pillard to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, becoming the second of President Obama’s three nominees to the court to be confirmed since the Senate changed its filibuster rules.

Pillard is also the seventh woman to serve on the D.C. Circuit, a court that now has five active female judges.

“This morning’s confirmation of Nina Pillard is yet another important step in strengthening the D.C. Circuit, which has been understaffed and unbalanced for far too long,” said Nancy Zirkin, executive vice president of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “Ms. Pillard is a highly accomplished litigator who has practiced law throughout the country at nearly every level of the legal system. She is an exceptional candidate and will serve the D.C. Circuit with distinction.”

Earlier this week, the Senate also confirmed Congressman Mel Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency, a position that oversees Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Housing Administration.

“We applaud the Senate for confirming Ms. Pillard today and call for the swift consideration of Judge Robert Wilkins to the D.C. Circuit and the other executive and judicial nominations pending on the Senate floor,” Zirkin said.