Senate To Confirm Obama’s Top Judge On Monday


The Senate is poised to vote late Monday afternoon to confirm Patricia Millett to the powerful D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, the White House’s top priority when it comes to judicial nominations.

Millett is a shoo-in after Democrats voted late November to eliminate the filibuster for non-Supreme Court nominations. She had a comfortable majority of votes but couldn’t clear the 60-vote threshold to overcome a GOP filibuster.

Once Millett is confirmed, Democrats will have a 5-4 advantage over Republicans among active judges on the court. The Senate voted 55-43 to advance her nomination before the Thanksgiving recess, moments after Democrats triggered the “nuclear option” for filibuster reform.

Her nomination will be followed by Nina Pillard and Robert Wilkins (although it’s unclear when they’ll be confirmed) who also have the support of a majority of senators but were stymied by the filibuster.


Sahil Kapur is TPM's senior congressional reporter and Supreme Court correspondent. His articles have been published in the Huffington Post, The Guardian and The New Republic. Email him at and follow him on Twitter at @sahilkapur.