Thursday, September 06, 2007

Bush Ignores Webb and Warner

After Republican Sen. John Warner and Democratic Sen. Jim Webb, both of Virginia, spent countless hours in bipartisan deliberation to find the most qualified candidates to submit to President Bush for the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, Bush ignored all their work and efforts.

Thanks but no thanks! Bush decided instead to nominate E. Duncan Getchell, Jr.

Here's what Webb had to say in an e-mail:
“In the spirit of bipartisanship, Senator Warner and I submitted a list of five exemplary candidates to the White House whom this body could support. In an effort to fill the Virginia vacancies on the Fourth Circuit as quickly as possible, we undertook an open and extensive search to find five individuals whom we deemed eminently qualified.

“With an unprecedented level of involvement of professional legal organizations, as well as five Virginia Bar Associations, Senator Warner and I jointly interviewed more than a dozen distinguished attorneys from the Commonwealth, including two sitting members of the Virginia Supreme Court. Other candidates we interviewed included the Dean of the University of Richmond Law School, as well as a U.S. District Court Judge from Norfolk.

“At the end of this process, Senator Warner and I submitted five outstanding candidates to the President. These five candidates possessed exceptional legal qualifications and received the highest ratings from the legal organizations and Bar Associations. Virginia has a long tradition of outstanding federal jurists. The names that Senator Warner and I offered were consistent with that tradition.

“Today, despite our good faith, bipartisan effort to accommodate the President, the recommendations that Senator Warner and I made have been ignored. The White House talks about the spirit of bipartisanship, lamenting congressional obstructionism. The White House cannot expect to complain about the confirmation of federal judges when they proceed to act in this manner.”
Just the other day during Warner's retirement announcement, he commended Webb for his bipartisanship in winnowing down the list of candidates to the Court; hopefully, Howling Latina will have info on Mr. Getchell in a later post.

Update: The Washington Post reports that Getchell is a conservative lawyer from Richmond.

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