Biden authorized workforce asks senators for judicial nomination suggestions

By Sarah Mucha and Paul LeBlanc, CNN

(CNN) – President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team has sent a letter to the Democratic Senators asking for recommendations for vacancies in the district courts, a transition official told CNN.

The letter, written by the new White House attorney, Dana Remus, asked senators to provide various names based on race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, veteran status, and disability are based.

Remus has requested that all referrals be sent “as soon as possible and no later than January 19, 2020,” indicating that Biden intends to fill vacancies when he takes office.

“Joe Biden proudly stood up for the historic endorsements of Justices Ginsburg, Sotomayor and Kagan and reshaped the Senate Judiciary Committee to reflect the diversity and breadth of America,” transition spokesman Jamal Brown said in a statement.

“As president, he will nominate the first black woman to the Supreme Court and appoint judges who share his commitment to the rule of law and uphold individual civil rights and civil liberties.”

The letter, first reported by HuffPost, underscores the vital role vacancies will play in Biden’s early administration after President Donald Trump – with the help of a determined Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell – significantly reshaped the judiciary during his tenure.

In total, Trump confirmed more than 200 candidates for justice, enough to cement a conservative stance in federal justice for decades to come.

By comparison, former President Barack Obama has successfully appointed 334 federal judges during his two terms, according to the US courts. Former President George W. Bush successfully appointed 340 judges during his eight-year term, while former President Bill Clinton benched 387 judges during his two terms.

Still, Biden’s ability to approve a wave of new judges depends largely on the results of the Georgia Senate runoff on January 5th.

If any of the incumbent Republicans, Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, hold onto their seats, their party will retain its Senate majority.

However, if Democratic challengers Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock prevailed, the Democrats would gain control of the Senate thanks to Kamala Harris’ tied vote as President of the Senate.

“Send me these two men,” said Biden during a rally for the two Democratic candidates earlier this month, “and we will control the Senate and change the lives of the people of Georgia.”

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