Proposed Rules Change Would Further Deteriorate Senate’s Independence

Courts 02.13,19

February 13, 2019

For Immediate Release
Contact: Kristen Voorhees, voorhees@civilrights.org, 202.548.7166

WASHINGTONVanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on the Senate Rules Committee party-line advancement of a proposal to reduce post-cloture debate time on nominees:

“The Senate Rules Committee’s approval of this partisan scheme perfectly exemplifies Republicans’ concerted effort to eviscerate the Senate’s constitutional role as an independent check on the executive branch. If passed by the full Senate, it will only help President Trump pack the courts with extremist judges faster than even the neck-breaking pace he set last Congress.

“This latest partisan move is one of many to diminish the constitutional duty the Senate has to thoroughly evaluate nominees for lifetime judgeships. The Republicans’ agenda is clear: to accelerate the dangerous takeover of the federal courts at lightning speed. Every senator must protect the Senate’s independent role by speaking out against this partisan power grab. If Republicans next break the standing rules of the Senate to force through this change, it must be viewed as the threat to our independent courts that it is.”

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its member organizations, visit www.civilrights.org.