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Toomey’s Statement on the Nomination of Rebecca Haywood to the Third Circuit

March 16, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, President Obama announced the nomination of Rebecca Ross Haywood to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) issued the following statement.

"Over the years, President Obama's Administration, Senator Casey, and I have worked well together on filling federal judgeships for Pennsylvania. Since 2011, we have confirmed two Third Circuit judgeships - including one just a couple months ago - as well as filled fourteen vacancies at the district court level. Only two states - California and New York - have had more vacancies filled during this time. Currently, we are working to advance four more federal district court nominees through the Senate, and I remain committed to doing all I can to get these nominees confirmed.

"That's why it is so disappointing that - for the first time since I've been in the Senate - President Obama is nominating someone for the federal bench in Pennsylvania without the approval of both Senator Casey and me. The Administration knows that I have concerns about the nomination of Ms. Haywood to serve on the Third Circuit. For instance, when I interviewed her for this position, she struggled to answer legal questions about the constitutionality of executive actions such as President Obama's executive amnesty. Her inadequate responses cast serious doubt on whether she would capably serve at the federal appellate level, and I do not support her nomination.

"During what has been a largely cooperative and successful bipartisan judicial appointment process, there have occasionally been disagreements and delays behind the scenes from both sides. And yet these matters have been handled privately with the overarching goal of finding a bipartisan consensus that all parties could support and is in the best interest of the Pennsylvanians we serve. It is unfortunate that the White House has decided to pursue this partisan, confrontational approach over a flawed candidate.

"I therefore urge President Obama to reconsider his partisan, my-way-or-the-highway approach here. Instead of blowing up a bipartisan working arrangement for judicial nominees that has done so much good for Pennsylvania, the President should take a step back, put an end to this political theater, withdraw a nomination that is not suitable for such an important lifetime position, and instead work across the aisle with Senator Casey and me to arrive at a consensus nominee as we have for every other vacancy since 2011."

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