Jeffery Toobin claims that round one of the the next Supreme Court confirmation battle is in fact going on right now, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit. It didn't used to be this way. Before Robert Bork's infamous Borking, federal judicial nominations were not so contentious. I blogged before about the liberals winning the Bork battle but in the end, losing the judicial appointment war now that its fair game to attack a nominee not for her qualifications and credentials, but because you just disagree with their politics.
Now the judicial appointment fights have spilled over into Tbe U.S. Courts of Appeals, which I argued in my book The Immigration Battle in American Courts, have become policy makers in their own right due to the sheer number of cases that they adjudicate and the comparatively miniscule number the Supreme Court hears. Toobin and others have reported that Obama is not getting very far with filling vacancies on the federal judiciary. Yes, of course the President is juggling many other pressing problems, gun control, immigration, the economy, but it is a shame that he is not pushing much more aggressively to fill the seats because given life tenure for federal judges, judicial appointments are one way a president can leave his mark on the political world long after she has left office.