Mar 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Conservative agenda sweeps federal courts

President Trump

President Trump. Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

During his first three years in office, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s assistance, President Trump was able to name nearly as many appellate judges as President Obama appointed over two terms, The New York Times reports.

Why it matters: Trump repeatedly boasts about the number of judges he has appointed while campaigning for re-election. The New York Times review of Trump's judicial appointees found the president is significantly breaking "with the norms set by his Democratic and Republican predecessors, Barack Obama and George W. Bush."

The state of play: "More than one-third of the Trump appointees have filled seats previously occupied by judges appointed by Democrats," the Times writes.

  • Two-thirds of Trump appointees are white men, The Times calculates.
  • The new judges are picked for their strong conservative background, and at least seven have held jobs with Trump's campaign or administration.
  • Trump has appointed as many judges to the federal appeals court during his first terms as former President Obama did over two terms.

Go deeper: How Trump is reshaping the courts

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