President Donald Trump says Democrats are holding up his judicial nominees, but almost nine months into his presidency, he has had more judges confirmed than President Barack Obama did in the same time period, and his numbers aren’t far off those of other recent presidents.
Trump counts the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch as one of his signature achievements. But on Monday he charged that Senate Democrats are holding up confirmation of his other judicial nominees “beyond comprehension.” A top Senate Democrat said claims Democrats are obstructing judicial nominees are false.
Speaking in the White House Rose Garden on Monday afternoon, Trump said “something that people aren’t talking about is how many judges we’ve had approved, whether it be the court of appeals, circuit judges, whether it be district judges.”
“The Democrats are holding them up beyond anything. Beyond comprehension, they’re holding them up,” Trump said. Earlier in the day, at a Cabinet meeting, Trump said his judicial nominees are “some of the most qualified people ever, and they’re waiting forever on line.”
Since taking office in January, Trump has nominated 61 people to federal judgeships, according to information available on the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts’ website. Approximately 100 more seats are open and awaiting a nominee.