November 17th, 2009
05:10 PM ET
12 years ago

Senate Democrats break GOP judicial filibuster

Washington (CNN) - Senate Democrats broke a GOP filibuster Tuesday against a district judge first nominated eight months ago by President Barack Obama for a seat on the federal appeals court.

The Senate voted 70-29 to end debate over the nomination of Indiana Judge David Hamilton, who was tapped by Obama in March to fill a vacancy on the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Hamilton was Obama's first judicial nominee.

The full Senate is now expected to move forward quickly on a final vote on the nomination.

Hamilton's nomination cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee in June. Leading Republicans, however, then spent weeks preventing a final vote, arguing that Hamilton is too liberal.

Congressional Democrats have expressed growing unease over what they argue is a slow pace of both judicial nominations and confirmations since Obama took office.

–CNN's Dana Bash contributed to this report

Filed under: Congress
soundoff (239 Responses)
  1. pedestrian

    "hopefully the republicans will keep doing this – stalling / delaying any and everything the uber-leftists try to ram through. That way it FORCES the liberals to have to fully vote (and therefore take responsibility of) anything going through. None of this hiding behind voting "present" like obammy did – and getting away with it."

    A filibuster is a vote against cloture – that is, what the Republicans are doing is blocking an up-or-down vote, exactly the opposite of what you think they are doing. Also, it is impossible to vote "present" in the US Senate, which has different rules than the Illinois legislature.

    Go do some reading and get back to us

    November 17, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  2. Rob

    FINALLY! More is needed of this in the Senate and House by the Dems! Do you get it??!!

    November 17, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  3. i hate stupid democrats

    So, the democrats are crying that confirmation hearings are so slow....

    Well, what where they doing during the previous administration? They were sitting on their hands because they intentionally wanted to block any republican appointments. Now that they are in power, all they can do is cry....

    November 17, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  4. crump's brother

    I thought Republicans said that the President deserves an up or down vote on judicial nominees. Oh wait – I guess that only applies to Republican Presidents.

    November 17, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  5. Frances

    "Hamilton has consistently ruled against pro-life measures
    and also ruled that it was illegal for the Indiana
    Legislature to invoke Jesus, but perfectly legal to
    call on Allah."
    This is one liberal justice we can do without.
    We want justices that will make their rulings based on the constitution and law not their FEELINGS!

    November 17, 2009 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    Sorry, not buying it GOPers. Bush packed the justice dept with wierdos who went to that fake university started by that fundy nutjob hack, Robertson, and nominated judges who clearly believed things like Roe v. Wade should be overturned (i.e., did not respect the law or precedent). Judges are not "too liberal" for saying things that are indisputably true, such as "health care reform is not unconstitutional" or "women have the Constitutional right to choose to have an abortion." It's just more smoke and mirrors from the kids who spent their high school days in the romper room, led by Boehner and his pet monkey Cantor.

    November 17, 2009 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  7. drummergirl

    Randy, the Senate needs the 60 votes to be able to end the filibuster, which is exactly what they did.

    November 17, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  8. Rachel M.

    The Glen Beck and the GOP do raise a valid question, has anyone really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?

    November 17, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  9. Lemonton

    GOP=Grand Obstructionist Party. Their motto: Just Say NO!

    November 17, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  10. Tim from Upstate NY

    All of you who are blaming the GOP for this are missing the point I'm afraid. The Democrats have 60 votes. If they can't get anything done then it's entirely their own fault. It is amazing though that they've convinced you that the problem is the Republicans. Perhaps you don't want to admit the painful truth that your own party is fractured and lacks discipline?

    November 17, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  11. George

    amazing. The GOP isthe Party of No. The Dem is the party who what to fix the country. Seems just like yesterday the reverse was true. The Dems were the Part of No while the GOP wanted to protect fix our country.
    It too bad that MOST people don't see that it is politics as usual in DC. The Party in power denouncing the Party out of power for obstructing their plan to fix the wrongs that need to be righten. While the Part ouf of power is denouncing the Party in power for going to far and not listening to the American people.

    November 17, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  12. Ron

    The GOP can't filibuster anything. They only have 40 seats. This is just more pro-Democrat spin from CNN.

    November 17, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  13. Tim

    IT MAKES NO DIFFERENCE which party is in the majority. There will always be roadblocks to passing any significant legislation that actually pushes this country forward. As long as we stick to private based funding methods to elect politicians, we will keep getting the same results. None of which are in the best interest of the country, but only to special interest groups one would have to suck up to in order to get re-elected. How bout publicly financing all Senate, House, & general election candidates. We are already providing matching funds in some cases. Let qualified people get elected that are interested in the general welfare of the country! Remove any possibility of private coercion and manipulation.

    November 17, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  14. vicki

    The party of "opposition" to whatever someone else, other than a Republican, is pathetic. This country needs consensus not division. They will never learn.

    November 17, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  15. W Family

    Liberals' ignorance is exceeded only by their pathetic condescension – facts matter not, truth matters not, even right from wrong matters not – we are living in a new dark age where the ends justify the means and the electorate is just one more bit of drivel to get out of the way so that the Democrats grand plan can save us all from our subservient selves. Liberals will tell you so. So shut up and do what you are told. Anyone that utters resistance is deemed radical, reactionary, even Neanderthal. The air must be very thin indeed on top of the Liberals Tower of Babel.

    November 17, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  16. Thomas

    It is pure comedy listening to the left bloggers on here. Everything they suggest about republicans being the party of no, obstructionists and on and on could have been said, and no doubt was said, about the democrats less than 3 years ago. It is always the same. My way or the highway. You complain about the otherside not jumping in line with what you want but you refuse to give one inch on any issue. Look in the mirror when you are talking about a *party" of no. Compromise takes compromise.

    November 17, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  17. diridi

    It is not question of Breaking...just pass this much needed Health care reform, then talk....ignore these Republican Idiots...ok....pass this health care with public second thought....good luck to America...

    November 17, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  18. phoenix86

    this is a jinx

    November 17, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  19. conservativekirk

    I thought the dems had 60 votes, that was the issue with circumventing rules and laws to get Teddy's seat filled, and Senator Al "The Body Ventura" Franken put in place. Then the dems can do anything they want without a single Republican vote. Your in power, you have all three bodies, you have the opportunity to use your power for good, or to be the worst ever. You're leaning the wrong way after the first 10 months in power.

    November 17, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  20. Dave

    For those of you who call the GOP obstructionists, they are only doing the same thing the Democrats did when they were the minority. Both sides play this game and for good or bad, that's just the way it is and probably always will be. I believe it used to be common to pass the nominations of any President until the Democrats went after Robert Bork and now its fairly common to go after the other party's nominations.

    November 17, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  21. Rich

    The Republicans will take back the House of Representatives in the 2010 mid-term elections. At that point everything will grind to a complete halt. Then, in the 2012 elections, the GOP will takes back the Senate and Presidency. The Dems will then vote lock-step against the Republicans with filibusters. Both sides do this.

    November 17, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  22. JAMEY

    The GOP is a malignant cancer on American society.

    November 17, 2009 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  23. Scott

    I don't get it, you blame the GOP for pushing back against what is currently a monopoly in government?

    Were the tables turned, democrats would be crying foul at the top of thier lungs.

    Yes, the GOP is resposible for slowing this down, but what about all the other lost Obama promises... Democrats need to look at the overall ineffectiveness of their chosen one rather than crying about the holdup of a single nomination.

    November 17, 2009 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  24. A. Smith, Oregon

    I hope this is the first of many GOP filibuster defeats in the US Senate.

    Vote the GOP Obstructionists Out!

    November 17, 2009 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  25. david

    the republican's stupidity can be overridden very simply. when the congress takes their next vacation all the president has to do is appoint to the courts who he has nominated. everybody does it. even w – who i consider to be pretty stupid- did it. so there really isn't a problem of getting all the liberals he wants on the courts.

    November 17, 2009 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
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