Democrats Celebrate as Tensions Rise

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( – The Democrats are celebrating an important milestone as they have passed the 100th judicial confirmation of Joe Biden’s presidency. Still, the tension in the Senate is escalating as the Democrats are considering putting an end to a century-long Senate practice, known as the “blue slip.”

Republicans, however, have warned the Democrats against this move as it could potentially lead to even more partisanship in the judicial confirmation process. If there is a clash regarding Senate procedures, then that might put a pause in President Biden’s plans to fill as many court vacancies as he can within the next two years of his term.

During the Trump administration, the Republicans started approving judges with increased speed. When the Democrats won the White House, they made a judge confirmation one of their top priorities in order to fill as many of the available seats as possible. This is particularly important now that the Republicans have won the House majority, which enables them to halt Biden’s legislative agenda.

The “blue slip” refers to the practice of the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee sending out a blue-colored form to the senators representing the home state of a judicial nominee in which the senators can write their response to the nominee. If the response is positive then the judicial nomination can proceed to a hearing, however, if the slip is not returned or the response is negative, then the nomination is often time blocked.

However, during the Trump administration Republicans proceeded without a positive blue slip on 17 separate occasions. This caused tensions as the Democrats pointed out that several nominees during the Obama administration had been blocked because of the lack of a positive blue slip.

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