Crisis: Federal Judicial Vacancies Dire Situation

Experts blame Republican delaying tactics, slow White House nominations and a dysfunctional Senate confirmation system.

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President Barack Obama

The Washington Post is reporting that there is a federal judicial-vacancies crisis. Federal judges have been retiring at a rate of one per week this year, driving up vacancies that have nearly doubled since President Obama took office. Six judges have retired in the past six weeks alone. There has been an exodus of federal judges that have left without being replaced by the president's nominees. Experts blame Republican delaying tactics, slow White House nominations and a dysfunctional Senate confirmation system.

Senate Republicans and the White House are vowing to work together to set aside the divisions that have slowed confirmations, and the Senate on Monday approved Obama nominees for judgeships in Arkansas, Oregon and Texas. Eight more nominees are expected to receive votes in the coming weeks. If the backlog eases, then it is thought that Obama will have a chance to appoint federal judges who may be able to challenge the conservative shift of the courts under the George W. Bush administration.

It's amazing how important issues like this fly under the radar. Luckily, Obama and "friends" are making this crisis a priority. Let's hope it stays that way.

Read more at the Washington Post.