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Republicans take aim at new move by judiciary to curb ‘judge-shopping’

By 37ci3 Mar14,2024



WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on Thursday criticized a federal court move to limit the practice of “judge shopping,” an approach conservative lawyers have used in recent high-profile cases. find a sympathetic lawyer.

McConnell said on the Senate floor that the Judicial Conference of the United States, the judiciary’s policy-making body, conservative groups and Republican attorneys general have sided with Democrats who complain that controversial cases are filed in single-judge chambers.

“This was an unforced error by the Judicial Conference,” McConnell said. “I hope they reconsider.”

He suggested that district courts may resist the introduction of the new policy.

“I hope that district courts across the country will instead weigh what’s best for their jurisdictions, not just the half-assed ‘guidance’ that Washington Democrats are proposing,” he said.

Recent examples of judge shopping include several cases filed in Texas, including a conservative bid to overturn federal approval of the abortion pill mifepristone. It was filed in Amarillo, where the judge was guaranteed to be Matthew Kaczmarik, a former conservative attorney general appointed by then-President Donald Trump.

new policy, announced this weekwould ensure that any cases seeking to block state or federal policies in federal district courts would be randomly assigned from larger groups of judges.

There are some conservative judges has already been criticized movement. It was described as a “good idea” by Judge Jeffrey Sutton, a conservative judge on the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals who chairs the Judicial Conference’s executive committee.

McConnell complained that the move doesn’t address the real cause of concern: judges are increasingly issuing nationwide injunctions that block federal policies. This happened with increasing frequency under the Trump administration and continued under the Biden administration.

The new policy would disproportionately benefit Democrats, McConnell said, though he did not say why.

“It will have no practical effect in places favored by liberal activists, but Democrats are salivating at the prospect of closing access to justice in places favored by conservatives,” he said.

Under the new policy, the pool of potential judges in Democratic-leaning states is likely to be liberal, but the pool of judges in most Republican states is likely to be conservative.

The difference is that lawyers will not be able to choose a specific judge.



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By 37ci3

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