Sen. Chris Coons released a statement June 6 after the committee held a hearing to consider, among others, the nomination of David Porter, whom President Donald Trump has nominated for a lifetime appointment on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which has appellate jurisdiction over the district courts in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Holding the hearing June 6 ignores the objections of one of Porter’s “home state” senators, Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pennsylvania, which typically precludes a nominee from being considered by the Judiciary Committee.
“I am deeply disappointed that today Sen. Grassley broke further from the Senate’s blue slip tradition by advancing the nomination of David Porter to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals over the objections of one of Mr. Porter’s home state senators, Bob Casey. The blue slip process, in place for more than a century, empowers each senator to have a role in selecting which judges are nominated for federal judgeships in their states. It is an important tool for ensuring that no matter who is in the White House or which party controls the Senate, the president will consult with senators to guarantee that those nominated for the federal bench reflect their communities and understand the needs of their constituents,” said Coons.
“Sen. Casey has worked with the White House in good faith on several prior nominations, and he has made clear that he believes Mr. Porter’s extreme views and well-documented advocacy for legal theories that would limit access to health care, undermine workers’ rights and deny equal treatment under the law to every American render him unfit for the bench. The fact that both the White House and the Judiciary Committee went ahead with Mr. Porter’s nomination over Sen. Casey’s objection, rather than working in good faith with him to find another candidate, is troubling. I share Sen. Casey’s concern that Porter’s views are well outside the mainstream, and if confirmed, will have a detrimental impact on families in Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey for decades to come,” said Coons.
“This matters. We should be working together to advance nominees for these lifetime judicial appointments who can earn broad support from both parties, who have the experience to handle the most complex issues of our time, and who have demonstrated the even and fair temperament required to administer justice. Eroding Senate practices and traditions that encourage us to work together will only make the Senate more partisan and less inclined toward compromise. Republicans held fast to the blue slip tradition during the Obama administration, and I regret that many Democratic senators are not being afforded the same respect during this administration,” said Coons.