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Schumer Gives McConnell an Inch... And Guess What?

Senator Chuck Schumer.
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Eager to let his members go home and campaign for the November 6 midterms, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, New York’s senior senator, made a deal October 11 with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the dour Kentucky Republican, to allow votes on 15 more Trump-nominated right wing judges for the federal courts and then adjourn. Schumer’s rationale was that they would be confirmed eventually by this Senate and the most Democrats could do was slow down the process.

Republicans, however, did not completely adjourn. With almost all senators out of town, a skeletal group of Republicans held “hearings” on still more judicial nominees from the far right, including for the first time someone who actually worked for Alliance Defending Freedom, the anti-LGBTQ group responsible for bringing most legal actions aimed at limiting the community’s rights and allowing religious people the right to discriminate based on First Amendment free exercise claims.

Allison Rushing, 36, interned for the group and has been nominated for the Richmond, Virginia-based Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. She graduated from law school in 2007 and not only has no experience as a judge, but does not even have the 12 years of legal experience necessary for the American Bar Association to consider her qualified to serve as a federal judge.

Trump has also nominated an out gay conservative, Patrick Bumatay — an éminence grise at age 40 — who belongs to an LGBTQ law association in California and who claims the distinction of assisting in the nominations of John Roberts, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. Of late, he’s been advising Attorney General Jeff Sessions on opioids and organized crime.

Updated 11:54 am, October 19, 2018
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