Will this guy get a seat on the Supreme Court?
The story is HERE:
The next Supreme Court confirmation hearing begins on Wednesday afternoon, April 10th. Technically, Sri Srinivasan [above] is just a candidate for the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, but few are misled. The stakes in this nomination are clear: if Srinivasan passes this test and wins confirmation, he’ll be on the Supreme Court before President Obama’s term ends.
The D.C. Circuit has long operated as a Supreme Court farm team (John Roberts, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg played their AAA ball there), and Republicans have worked with zeal, and amazing success, to keep Obama from placing a single judge on that court. Just last month, Caitlin Halligan, an eminently qualified New York prosecutor whose confirmation had been shamefully blocked by Senate Republicans for more than two years, withdrew her candidacy. Srinivasan is next up for consideration.
Srinivasan, who is forty-six years old, is currently the Obama Administration’s principal deputy solicitor general. He’s had twenty or so arguments in the Supreme Court, including part of the Administration’s attack on the Defense of Marriage Act last month. He’s been a corporate litigator at O’Melveny & Myers; a junior lawyer in the Office of the Solicitor General; and a law clerk to J. Harvie Wilkinson, who is a moderate conservative on the Fourth Circuit, and then to Sandra Day O’Connor. He earned degrees from Stanford in college, law school, and even business school; he grew up in Lawrence, Kansas, where his parents taught at the state university.
When Srinivasan’s name first surfaced as a possible nominee to the federal bench, early in Obama’s first term, he drew opposition from labor groups, who appeared to take issue with some of his stands as a private lawyer and in George W. Bush’s Justice Department. (He was a career lawyer, not a political appointee, under Bush.) Lately, those objections to Srinivasan have become muted or disappeared altogether. In part, this may be because those kinds of challenges to a nominee are inherently unfair; lawyers, after all, represent clients.
There’s more HERE:
Srinivasan’s background is as a litigator, meaning he’s spent most of his career defending other people’s positions rather than his own. That means that although he’s well-regarded among legal elites of all stripes, his own views are less than clear. At a time when Republican obstruction has ground the confirmation process to a halt, and the outspoken progressivism — or even mild progressivisim — of prior Obama nominees has run into GOP filibusters, Srinivasan’s unclear record offers Republicans few legitimate reasons to block him. It also means that liberals can’t be sure that Srinivasan actually shares their views.
Srinivasan has his defenders—many of them. They include a whole slate of former solicitors general from both parties, including Clinton-era acting Solicitor General Walter Dellinger, who is a partner at the law firm where Srinivasan worked when he defended Exxon. A small army of former Supreme Court clerks signed a letter endorsing Srinivasan’s nomination. Also excited for Srinivasan is the former Supreme Court justice he clerked for, Sandra Day O’Connor, who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan. O’Connor told Toobin that Srinivasan was “a wonderful choice.”