August 18, 2012

THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE:

Obama Lags on Judicial Picks, Limiting His Mark on Courts (CHARLIE SAVAGE, August 17, 2012, NY Times)

President Obama is set to end his term with dozens fewer lower-court appointments than both Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush achieved in their first four years, and probably with less of a lasting ideological imprint on the judiciary than many liberals had hoped for and conservatives had feared. [...]

While Mr. Bush quickly nominated a slate of appeals court judges early in his first year -- including several outspoken conservatives -- Mr. Obama moved more slowly and sought relatively moderate jurists who he hoped would not provoke culture wars that distracted attention from his ambitious legislative agenda.

"The White House in that first year did not want to nominate candidates who would generate rancorous disputes over social issues that would further polarize the Senate," said Gregory B. Craig, Mr. Obama's first White House counsel. "We were looking for mainstream, noncontroversial candidates to nominate."

Perhaps only Gerald Ford's stunted presidency will have left less of an imprint on the country than the UR's did.

Posted by at August 18, 2012 2:21 PM
  

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