Senate Panel to Hold Unusual Second Hearing for Judicial Nominee

Posted April 21, 2009 at 12:49pm

The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold an unusual second hearing for a federal court nominee next week, responding to Republican concerns over the speed with which President Barack Obama’s Justice Department picks are being considered.

The second hearing for David Hamilton, a district court judge in southern Indiana nominated to fill a vacancy on the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, is a victory for Republicans, who boycotted Hamilton’s first hearing. GOP Senators specifically cited the “unreasonable pace— of the panel in vetting Obama’s judiciary nominations.

Hamilton’s second hearing is set for April 29.

“It has been four weeks since Judge Hamilton first appeared before the Committee, and I am disappointed that Committee Republicans have yet to ask a single question of this nominee,— Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said in a statement. “After Judge Hamilton appears again before the Committee, I hope Republican members will not further delay our consideration of this qualified judicial nominee.—

Also next week, the Judiciary Committee plans to consider the nominations of Thomas E. Perez to be the assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice and Andre Davis to fill a vacancy on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.