Sunday, June 16

Obama stresses critical Dem Senate majority for appointing preferred judges

Former President Barack Obama emphasized the importance of preserving the Democratic Senate majority during a fundraiser Wednesday night, highlighting the chamber’s unique ability to confirm judges nominated by the president. 

“The ability to get judges appointed — never been more critical than it is today,” he said during the event in Potomac, Maryland. 

“On the legislative side, there have been some remarkable achievements that were only achieved because of that very slender, narrow win that we had,” he continued, according to a partial transcript released by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC). 

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His remarks at the fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) fundraiser came as President Biden, his former vice president, hit a milestone by officially confirming 200 judges during his term. Biden is currently outpacing former President Donald Trump, who was lauded by Republicans for speedily confirming judges himself. 

The Democrats are currently in the majority in the Senate but face a significant disadvantage with the 2024 electoral map, in which several vulnerable incumbents are in competitive races. The party has also sustained the loss of Sens. Joe Manchin, I-W.Va., and Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., both of whom are leaving office and switched to registered independents during their tenure. With Manchin’s exit, Republicans are expected to gain a seat in the chamber, while Arizona’s race is considered a deadlock that could go either way. 

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Three Democratic incumbents are embroiled in reelection races that are so close that non-partisan political handicapper the Cook Political Report deemed them “Toss Ups,” while Republican reelection races are almost all considered relatively safe. 

The emphasis on the ability to appoint judges also coincides with calls for Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to retire, so that Biden can appoint her successor. Trump notably was able to confirm three Supreme Court justices, leading to a number of landmark decisions, such as Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade. 

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Aside from the Supreme Court, Trump managed to appoint nearly the same number of appellate level judges as Obama did in only half the amount of time. The former president is expected to bring a similar urgency to judicial appointments in a second term if he wins in November, which would be significantly aided by a Republican Senate Majority. 

Obama informed attendees on Wednesday that preserving the Democratic majority in the chamber will take “a lot of work” and “a lot of organization.” 

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In Maryland, where the fundraiser was held, Democratic Senate nominee Angela Alsobrooks faces an unforeseen obstacle to election in Republican candidate Larry Hogan, a former two-term governor. The state has long been considered safely Democratic but with Hogan’s entrance into the race, Cook Political Report changed the rating to “Likely Democratic,” acknowledging his history as governor. His candidacy has similarly prompted some speculation that Republicans could gain a seat in blue Maryland.

A spokesperson for Obama did not provide additional comment to Fox News Digital. 

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