President Trump Has Totally Reshaped The Nation’s Courts, Appoints Over 180 Federal Judges
President Trump has continued to deliver on his promises to voters, but his work in the federal courts is one that will be felt for generations to come.
In spite of vehement amounts of opposition, President Trump has appointed 187 judges to the federal bench.
Trump nominees make up 1 in 4 U.S. circuit court judges, the San Francisco Gate notes. Two of his picks sit on the Supreme Court. And this past week, as the House voted to impeach the president, the Republican-led Senate confirmed another 13 district court judges.
The Gate goes on to say:
Trump’s mark on the judiciary is already having far-reaching effects on legislation and liberal priorities. Just last week, the 5th Circuit struck down a core provision of the Affordable Care Act. One of the two appellate judges who ruled against the landmark law was a Trump appointee.
The Supreme Court – where two of the nine justices are conservatives selected by Trump – could eventually hear that case.
The 13 circuit courts are the second most powerful in the nation, serving as a last stop for appeals on lower court rulings, unless the case is taken up by the Supreme Court. So far, Trump has appointed 50 judges to circuit court benches. Comparatively, by this point in President Barack Obama’s first term, he had confirmed 25. At the end of his eight years, he had appointed 55 circuit judges.
Appointing predominantly conservative judges is one of the reasons Americans voted for President Trump in 2016. The Gate points out that “Trump’s appointments have flipped three circuit courts to majority GOP-appointed judges, including the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in New York.” Furthermore, the majority of the judges who have been appointed are on relatively young, meaning they will remain on the bench for the duration of their lives if they so choose.
“I’ve always heard, actually, that when you become President, the most – single most important thing you can do is federal judges,” Trump said at a White House event in November.
“Now, President Obama was very nice to us. He gave us 142 empty positions. That’s never happened before,” Trump said last week. “But, as you know, that’s said to be the most important thing that a President has.”
Chris Kang, chief counsel of Demand Justice, a group that supports liberal judicial nominees, is not too pleased with these appointments:
“Republicans have been using the courts to achieve policy priorities that they couldn’t achieve through the democratically elected legislative branch of government,” Kang said. “These federal judges serve for life, that’s a point we take for granted, but not a way a lot of Americans understand it. Trump’s imprint on this country will be felt for decades through his courts.”
The issue came up during last week’s Democratic debate, when Amy Klobuchar said that the next president will “have to immediately start putting judges on the bench to fill vacancies so that we can reverse the horrific nature of these Trump judges.”
So, even though Democrats think impeaching Trump will somehow put an end to his presidency, the truth is his legacy will be felt for years to come thanks to his work in the court system.
Hopefully he continues this trend when he wins in 2020.