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News & Politics News & Politics

First Openly Gay Circuit Court Judge In History, Confirmed By Senate

Posted by on Sep. 24, 2013 at 2:49 PM
  • 12 Replies

WASHINGTON -- The Senate made history on Tuesday by voting to confirm Todd Hughes to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Hughes, who was confirmed 98 to 0, is the nation's first openly gay circuit judge. He has been a deputy director in the civil division of the Justice Department since 2007.

Unlike some of President Barack Obama's other key judicial nominees -- namely those for the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals -- Hughes cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee with a unanimous vote. With Hughes now confirmed, that leaves 13 judicial nominees awaiting Senate votes: two D.C. Circuit Court nominees and 11 district court nominees.

Many of those nominees will likely sail to confirmation after their votes in the Senate. But Republicans are holding up the votes, allowing them proceed at a pace of about one to two nominees per week, said a senior Democratic aide.

Before Obama came into office, the Senate used to clear the calendar of non-controversial judicial nominees at the end of every work period, said the aide, but Republicans "won't do that anymore."

Don Stewart, a spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), pushed back on the idea that Republicans are holding up anyone. Four of the 13 nominees were only reported out of committee last week, he said, and the others were reported out within two weeks of the August recess.

"So in Senate time, [they] have only been on the calendar about a month, which is not long at all," Stewart said. "Plus, we’ve been moving judges since we came back in. None have been on the calendar since before a huge group came out of committee on July 18. There are no long-wait nominees at all."


The Obama administration regularly boasts of the diversity of its candidates in its push to get them confirmed. Of the 13 pending nominees, nine are women and four are African-American. And, like Hughes, some of them would make history if confirmed. Debra Brown would be the first African-American district judge in the Northern District of Mississippi, and Landya McCafferty, Susan Watters and Elizabeth Wolford would be the first female district judges in their districts (New Hampshire, Montana and the Western District of New York, respectively).

"Many of the president's circuit judges have broken new diversity barriers -- including three Hispanic, two Asian-American, and one African-American -- who are 'firsts,' in their respective courts," White House Counsel Kathy Ruemmler wrote in a blog postshortly after the vote.

"The judiciary will better reflect the nation it serves, instilling even greater public confidence in our justice system," Ruemmler wrote. "We look forward to the “seconds” and “thirds” who will come after Todd Hughes and his fellow “firsts” currently serving on our courts.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/24/todd-hughes-gay-judge_n_3982256.html

by on Sep. 24, 2013 at 2:49 PM
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Replies (1-10):
-Celestial-
by Pepperlynn on Sep. 24, 2013 at 2:50 PM

gay pride ribbonim pflag

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Sep. 24, 2013 at 4:30 PM
1 mom liked this

So? Who cares? His own private business, not ours.

No one's sexuality is anyone's business. Just go away.

erika9009
by Silver Member on Sep. 24, 2013 at 4:33 PM
1 mom liked this

It does not really matter as long has he does his job, knows the law and does not show preferential treatment to gay or non gay people.

It baffles me that Progressives almost have an orgasm on diversity.  It does not matter if the best qualified person was chosen, as long as it's "diverse"

PamR
by Platinum Member on Sep. 24, 2013 at 7:31 PM
1 mom liked this



Quoting erika9009:

It does not really matter as long has he does his job, knows the law and does not show preferential treatment to gay or non gay people.

It baffles me that Progressives almost have an orgasm on diversity.  It does not matter if the best qualified person was chosen, as long as it's "diverse"

Until very recently, "diversity" of the gay kind would keep you out of jobs like these if you were open about it, whether you were the most qualified person or not.  So it's a victory that an openly gay person can be appointed to an office like this.  And it should absolutely be because he or she is the best qualified.


motherslove82
by Bronze Member on Sep. 24, 2013 at 7:38 PM
2 moms liked this

As long as he is the best person for the job and just happens to be gay and it isn't done just to make history. 

IandLoveandYou
by Penny Lane on Sep. 24, 2013 at 7:51 PM
2 moms liked this
It baffles me when conservatives act like it has never mattered in politics if someone wasnt a white, straight, Christian male.

We are becoming more tolerant as a country. It is worth celebrating. Sorry to rain any positivity on your parade of "meh, who cares".


Quoting erika9009:

It does not really matter as long has he does his job, knows the law and does not show preferential treatment to gay or non gay people.

It baffles me that Progressives almost have an orgasm on diversity.  It does not matter if the best qualified person was chosen, as long as it's "diverse"

gludwig2000
by Gina on Sep. 24, 2013 at 8:30 PM

 Good for him. Like someone else said, he probably was denied positions before because he was open about his sexuality, so this is a big step,imo.

-Celestial-
by Pepperlynn on Sep. 24, 2013 at 9:58 PM


Quoting gludwig2000:

 Good for him. Like someone else said, he probably was denied positions before because he was open about his sexuality, so this is a big step,imo.

That's what I'm thrilled about, people who otherwise wouldn't be considered or given such high position without being in the closet can do so because of baby steps to progress.

sarahjz
by Bronze Member on Sep. 25, 2013 at 10:42 AM
Goood for him, and for the gay community.
sarahjz
by Bronze Member on Sep. 25, 2013 at 10:44 AM

This ↓ AND, young people who are gay need positive role models.  It's good for them to know they can achieve what they want.  It might be hard to see that when you are being ridiculed and otherwise persecuted.

Quoting -Celestial-:


Quoting gludwig2000:

 Good for him. Like someone else said, he probably was denied positions before because he was open about his sexuality, so this is a big step,imo.

That's what I'm thrilled about, people who otherwise wouldn't be considered or given such high position without being in the closet can do so because of baby steps to progress.


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