Judge Andrew Schopler – Nominee to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California has brought in four new judges since President Biden came to office. Biden is hoping to make it six with the nominations of state judge James Simmons and U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew Schopler.


Andrew George Schopler received his B.A. summa cum laude from Dartmouth College in 1994. Schopler then received a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1997 and spent a year as a solo practitioner and a public defender in Chapel Hill, North Carolina before joining Rudolf and Maher.

In 2004, Schopler became a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California. Schopler stayed with the office until his appointment in 2016 to become a U.S. Magistrate Judge on the Southern District of California.

History of the Seat

Schopler has been nominated to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California, to a seat vacated on January 22, 2021, by Judge Larry Burns’ move to senior status.

Legal Experience

Schopler started his legal career in North Carolina, practicing criminal defense both as a public defender and in private practice taking court appointed cases. Among the cases he handled in North Carolina, Schopler successfully persuaded the North Carolina Court of Appeals to reverse Jimmy Harris’ conviction for First Degree Murder, finding that the trial court had erroneously allowed the state to cross-examine the defendant regarding a fifteen year old aggravated battery conviction. See State v. Harris, 562 S.E.2d 547 (N.C. App. 2002).

As a federal prosecutor in San Diego, Schopler prosecuted drug crimes. See, e.g., Hells Angel Gets Two-Decade Prison Term for Dealing Meth, City News Service, Dec. 3, 2012. Notably, he worked on Operation Dog Pound, a wiretapping investigation targeting methamphetamine and crack cocaine trafficking in San Diego. See Operation Dog Pound Defendant Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison, States News Service, Sept. 12, 2011. He also prosecuted public corruption cases. See, e.g., Mexican Businessman, Two Others, Convicted in Scheme to Funnel Money Into 2012 Mayoral Campaigns, City News Service, Sept. 9, 2016.

Schopler also had the opportunity to brief and argue appeals as a federal prosecutor. For example, Schopler successfully defended against motions to suppress in a border patrol agent search case at both the trial and appellate levels. Compare United States v. Reyes-Bosque, 463 F. Supp. 2d 1138 (S.D. Cal. 2006) with United States v. Reyes-Bosque, 596 F.3d 1017 (9th Cir. 2009). See also United States v. Navarro, 608 F.3d 529 (9th Cir. 2010) (affirming conviction for importing heroin and possession with intent to distribute).


Since 2016, Schopler has served as a U.S. Magistrate Judge on the Southern District of California. In this role, he presides over pretrial, trial, grand jury and discovery matters. Among the notable matters he has handled as a magistrate, Schopler recommended the denial of a habeas petition filed by California inmate Hussein Ibrahim, finding them to be untimely. See Ibrahim v. Fox, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16747 (S.D. Cal. Jan. 25, 2018). This report was adopted by Judge Roger Benitez, who stated that the report was “thoughtful and thorough.” See Ibrahim v. Fox, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27091, at *2 (S.D. Cal. Feb. 20, 2018).

In another case, Schopler declined to dismiss a prisoner’s civil rights claim for failure to exhaust, ruling that the allegation that a guard had threatened the plaintiff to get him to drop his administrative appeals was sufficient to excuse any failure to exhaust. See Mitchell v. Silva, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129369 (S.D. Cal. July 21, 2020).

Political Activity

Schopler has a handful of political donations to his name, all to Democrats, including Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina.

Overall Assessment

With twenty-five years of legal experience and six years on the bench, Schopler will likely be deemed as close to a consensus nominee as can be found this Congress. He will likely have a smooth confirmation, calendar permitting.


  1. With extensive legal experience from both sides of the aisle, this is a extremely well qualified nominee here who has nothing suggesting that he shouldn’t be confirmed. The only thing that may impede his confirmation is the calendar, but considering that the court he is being nominated to still has quite a few vacancies, there will likely be a priority on filling them.


  2. California has nominated some young & progressive judicial nominees for the 9th circuit, Central, Eastern & Northern districts. The Southern district on the other hand has had some older & centrist nominees. This seems to be another nominee in the mold as his soon to be colleagues on the Southern district.

    While I usually give high marks for a nominee that was a federal defender, in this case he left the position in less then a year so that’s a bit concerning. While qualified, this seems to be a below par nominee for a bright blue state like California when it comes to a young (He seems to be in his 50’s) & progressive.


  3. I looked up the cases he prosecuted listed above. Schoper has some law & order credentials. He may get bipartisan support like Florence Pan and Patricia Giles.

    In 2013, former Hell’s Angel David Garcia got 21 years in prison. His co-defendant, Jason Scanlan, got 15 years & 8 months.

    In 2011, the lead drug dealer in Operation Dog Pound, Michael Tryals, got 20 years.

    In 2016, Mexican billionaire Jose Susumo Azano Matsura three years in prison and a $560,000 fine for international corruption.


    • I found a controversial case he presided over in 2017. He granted horse ranch owner Christian Crews the right to attend church while on trial for possessing kiddy porn. That upset some people. However, when Crews decided to plead guilty, Schopler sentenced him to 17.5 years. Another judge reduced it to 14 after it was revealed that a witness had claimed that she was a minor when she posed for him, even though she was 18 at the time.


  4. 99 senators are present, no reason steps cant be taken to start the abudu and HO discharge processing. It sucks for arianna freeman that she is gonna wait weeks if not months due to schumer incompetence, same thing happened to merle for ny district court seat, durbin revoked cloture after they couldn’t figure out that they didn’t have the numbers and were made a laughing stock by some right wingers. I am looking at senate races and guys polls after polls this stuff is getting close, emerson poll had masto losing in nevada that was just out yesterday, emerson also showed warnock losing. This entitled senators value their precious times over life time appointments and the window is so narrow. Incompetence.


    • I saw those polls as well. That’s why I think they should work straight through Saturday confirming judges through Friday, then on Saturday have votes on the gay marriage amendment. It would get major news coverage just for the senate being in session on a weekend. It will also highlight the dangers of Republicans gaining control even if the bill fails to get 60 votes.

      It’s simple… The Democrats along with Biden numbers goes up when the American people see them fighting, working for them & getting things done. We saw that over the past couple of months.The 3 day work week doesn’t highlight any of those 3 things. I’m not saying work every weekend, but for God sakes just throw one in with less then 60 days before the election. Make it look like you care even if you don’t. The news coverage will take care of the narrative. Republicans are great at optics. They can sell water to a whale in The Atlantic Ocean. Democrats should be better at optics. They have Hollywood on their side. I don’t understand why they thing Americans will only for the third time in the past 100 years vote for the party in complete power in the midterms simply because the Republicans suck. All they have to do is put in a little more effort & they will give Americas a reason to vote FOR the Democrats instead of just AGAINST the Republicans.


    • This is trolling, not to different than some of the doomtrollers at DKE.. Trafalgar and Rasmussen polls are known to be garbage, not just in their GOP lean but in horrible methodology. And the polls that show Walker ahead are all right-wing polls. Several other polls came out this week showing Warnock with a lead.

      What makes someone a troll is not their conclusion. It is their behavior. I agree with much of aangren’s conclusions, but it is obvious that this person is trolling in the clear hope to depress support.


      • A new marquette poll just came out today showing ron johnson gaining and beating barnes in wisconsin. You can be blind and stay as ignorant as you want shawn but i will be clear eyed about the fact that the senate fight for control is 50/50 and dare i say lean GOP given the environment. Is the marquette poll republican/partisan as well? Chuck schumer and his incompetence is wasting valuable senate floor time when there is a very good chance mcconnell is the next majority leader.
        Keep your sunglasses on and ignore it i wont


      • I would go a step further. Regardless I’d the polls, if the Dems are doing anything differently now then they would be doing if every single pill showed them down 20 points, then that in itself is the problem. They should be working now under the assumption that they will lose the senate regardless of any poll. If we keep the senate then great, but that should not be the assumption until the first Wednesday in November.

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Johnson/Barnes race was always around 50/50 (And the poll shows the race in the margin of error). Arguably the Nevada race might be too (although I think Cortez Masto has a *slight* advantage). But the PA, AZ, GA races were never 50/50 once the GOP nominated their Trump-backed candidates. There was always a Democratic lean to those races due to the low quality of the GOP candidates.

        The fight for Senate control is not 50/50 or leans GOP. It is pure trolling to say so by propping up bad right-wing polls and discounting other polls. That doesn’t mean the GOP can’t win the Senate, I mean a 25% chance still means they have a decent chance. But to suggest that it leans GOP, using bad right-wing polls is pure trolling. And aangren, you are a troll.


      • Some of the polls are truly crap. I saw a poll with Val Demmings up 4 points over Marco Rubio. I live in Miami. There’s no way she is leading period, let alone by 4 points. That same poll showed Crist behind DeSantis by 2 points. That is more believable but overall I stopped paying too much attention to polls after Hillary lost.


      • @Dequan

        Most of the polls are crap. Which is why I emphasize fundamentals and candidate quality for the Senate races. I don’t really trust polls as a whole all that much.

        But claiming that the Senate “leans GOP” and then using right-wing polls with bogus methodology that they refuse to disclose like Rasmussen and Trafalgar to justify such a conclusion is trolling.

        Again trolls are identified by their behavior, not due to their conclusions.


      • Haaaaa… Well I’m gonna be optimistic & give the benefit of the doubt that everybody on this site is expressing their true feelings. Hopefully nobody is actually wasting their time seriously trolling. I’ve always asked where do trolls get so much time from. I barely have enough time to do what I need for myself, let alone have time to go in a website or social media to troll… Lol


      • @Dequan

        Given the history of aangren’s comments here as a whole (the repetitive nature of their comments and almost zero comments that are informative or novel in any way), I think the designation of troll for this user is very well justified.
        Look I don’t like the Democrats’ performance on judges at all and I very loudly say that. But this user does nothing else other than that, and doesn’t really put any actual effort into their posts. That screams troll to me.


      • Lol… True

        I will say I’m very happy we are seeing an average of less then 20 hours for the circuit court confirmations the past seven (After tomorrow) nominees. The miscalculation on Freeman sucks but if the Dems learn from the mistake it will be worth it as long as she’s confirmed before the midterms. If the gay marriage amendment just takes up one day & there’s nothing else pressing on the agenda next week, we could see a couple more circuit court or multiple district court nominees confirmed as well. There needs to be some cloture motions sent to the floor tomorrow so we can get the week started off on the right foot Monday.


      • Biden needs to stop campaigning and opening his mouth with insults that do nothing but energize Trump voters. His presence on the campaign trail hurts Democrats who can do far better with him back in Washington.
        Kamala Harris needs to be on the campaign trail, but she can be back in Washington to break ties.


      • I’m fine with whoever campaigning from Thursday 6pm through Monday 1pm. But the rest of the week all 50 Dems & the VP needs to be in Washington getting the peoples work done in a 50/50 senate. As we can see having just one senator out can stall everything if all 50 Republicans get together & vote in unison.

        Even though when I wrote it on this site a few months ago I know some on here disagreed but I will repeat what I said back then. As the midterms grow closer the Republicans are more likely to show up & vote against all judicial nominees in unison. Not all nominees but I think you will see an increase. That will mean even one Democrat out will stop confirmations of most judges.

        I also said I think we will see an increase in discharge votes in the SJC. I hope I’m wrong about that. Either way, all Republicans can do is slow the process if all 50 Dems & VP Harris are not in town. They absolutely can stop confirmations temporarily if even one is out of town.

        We should be thankful yesterday was the first stoppage. To be honest Republicans could have done this long before Freeman between Dems one sided approach to Covid, health issues & other attendance related issues. Like I said before, I absolutely hate the 3 day work week but for God sakes I’ll give them that if we can just get a solid 100% attendance for those 3 days each week.


  5. I’ve been looking forward to Freeman’s confirmation for a long time, and I’ve been in a bad mood since she was denied confirmation on Tuesday. I would not be this upset if it were someone like Lee or Mendoza being denied confirmation.

    Reasons why I am upset about Freeman not being confirmed:

    1. We don’t get a young, qualified progressive judge on the bench
    2. If confirmed, Freeman is one of the few judges who is young enough to be Chief Judge (today I’m a little less upset about this one; Montecalvo is set to become Chief Judge on the 1st Cir. because of the lack of Trump judges)
    3. Theodore McKee is 75 years old. I’m sure that McKee was also upset about yesterday’s vote; he’s waited a year to retire. I have nothing against McKee but I would like him to retire.
    4. Freeman is from Pennsylvania, a key swing state where election-related disputes will almost certainly arise

    I hope that the Senate confirms Freeman by the end of the week (before they head into the gay marriage bill). I would say that the chances of Freeman being confirmed by tomorrow are about 50-50. I’ve only been this excited about a judge being confirmed a few times; Julian Neals (first Biden judge), Lucy Koh & Jennifer Sung (first Biden judges to my home circuit court), KBJ (first Biden SCOTUS justice), and that’s about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m sick and tired of the laziness of the Democratic senators. If you aren’t showing up for votes at this point, you shouldn’t be in the Senate. Period.

    I’ll be blunt, I’m pissed that Freeman wasn’t confirmed and Abudu and Bloomekatz haven’t been discharged. As I’ve said clearly before, I will not vote for Democrats in the midterms at all if Freeman is not confirmed and Abudu and Bloomekatz don’t get floor votes with all 50 Democrats there.


      • I am even more sick and tired of this lazy argument than I am with the Democrat’s performance.

        I can’t tell you how pissed off I am by President Biden, who has done a piss poor job as President, trying to cover his ass by attacking his opponents as “semi fascists” or “MAGA Republicans”. Whose votes do you actually think you are going to win with these juvenile insults? Do you honestly believe a Hispanic family in Nevada is going vote for Democrats because you portrayed the GOP as fascists? Joe Biden needs to sideline himself for the rest of the campaign except for fundraising. He is not helpful to the Democrats chances, and the less of him we see on the campaign trail, the better.

        If you want to win votes, start actually delivering for your base voters and not for hedge funds and big corporate interests. And sell your accomplishments to swing voters. Negative attacks should be about what the GOP is *doing* and proposing (which is why the emphasis on abortion and J6 works), and not the absurd comments Trump said the other day.

        I would rather be stabbed in the front by fascists than stabbed in the back by these shitty left bashing establishment Democrats. I would never vote for the pure scumbags that are Robert Menendez, Kyrsten Sinema, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, Josh Gottheimer, Henry Cuellar, Sean Patrick Maloney, or Abigail Spanberger.


  7. The senate has adjourned for the day. The only vote on judges happening tomorrow is confirmation of sarah merriam. All Because of schumer incompetence and democrats laziness, arianna freeman will have to be delayed several weeks if not months before she gets confirmed! unacceptable error! You will never see mcconnell do such a rookie mistake, something as crucial as an appellate nominee fail on the senate floor is unacceptable, republicans confirmed justin walker to the D.C circuit within less than two months from the time his nomination was sent to the senate, arianna freeman was nominated in JANUARY! and this clowns cant get it right..
    Sad prediction: ARIANNA FREEMAN wont be confirmed until after the midterms at best. Schumer is gonna do the publicity stunt on the marriage vote he knows doesn’t have 10 GOP votes next week, instead of using it to advance nominees.
    Absolute failure of leadership.


  8. Disappointing that they aren’t moving ahead on Freeman tomorrow. I guess we will hold out hope for something next week and some additional cloture filings tomorrow afternoon.

    I do think a gay marriage vote next week is good politics, hopefully that happens. The fact that so many Republicans are running for the hills and trying to delay signals that they know their opposition is unpopular.


    • The gay marriage bill is definitely good politics so I’m ok with that. The bottom line for Freeman & the 4 (Probably soon to be 5 after this Thursday) nominees that need discharge votes is math. If all 50 Dems & the VP are not in DC then let’s not waste anymore valuable floor time on votes that will fail. All they need to do is pick out 2 days & not all 4 plus probably Brad Garcia after Thursday out. As long as that all gets done before the midterms I’m fine with it. But under no circumstances should they leave it for after.

      On another note, they should be pushing for more voice votes. At a minimum the two older Puerto Rico nominees should be able to be considered. They are not

      Liked by 1 person

    • @Joe
      I so envy you your unwavering optimism. The latest being yesterday when you were so sure that Freeman would be confirmed either today or tomorrow.
      I’m still looking forward to the overwhelming Ballou vote.
      Whether it’s judges or rosy midterm predictions for the party in power, I think politics would be so much more fun for me if I weren’t such a pessimist. But I just can’t shake the Mount Everest that is realism. I’d much rather be pleasantly surprised than being disappointed by hope.


      • I am indeed an optimist in most things, sometimes to a fault. While I am disappointed that the Freeman vote failed I feel pretty confident that it will eventually get done, as the votes are there. It just a logistical matter.


      • @Dequan
        I’m pretty sure that the chair has to keep off the agenda the nominees that haven’t finished and submitted their written questions. So the delay is probably with the nominees. I know the delay sucks and I’m no Durbin apologist, but I care about procedures and rules lol.


      • I can’t imagine why a nominee wouldn’t clear their schedule the Monday to Wednesday following their hearing to answer any follow up written questions. Especially now when a week could be the difference getting confirmed or not depending on the outcome of the midterms. It’s mind boggling to me.


    • That is much more important, IMO than any of the other characteristics which have symbolized Biden’s picks this far (although they still matter for sure). We desperately need more diversity of opinion on all of the circuit courts, and hopefully Biden will continue to nominate (and have the Senate confirm) such candidates.


    • You know my view on this. All the good Biden has done on judges has been wiped out by putting the horrendous nominee J. Michelle Childs on the DC Circuit. No President since Truman nominated a judge this bad to a court as high as this. For all the racists that JFK/LBJ nominated, they were done so largely to district courts in the South and in exchange for getting solid progressive judges appointed to places like the DC Circuit and SCOTUS.

      And it’s not just Childs. He has nominated more F judges in blue states who are worse than anyone Obama appointed in these states. There are some really horrendous choices here; Rearden, O’Hearn, Estudillo, etc.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I will be very interested to see who the nominees are for next week’s SJC hearing. For circuit court, it will be interesting to see if they go in order. If so, Julie Rikelman should be one of the two nominees.

    If @Shawn is right & senator Manchin won’t vote for an outright pro-choice nominee, she is the creme de la creme. I was just updating some of her notable cases on her Wikipedia page & WOW, I had to stop after some because I didn’t want her page to be too long… Lol

    If she stands no chance of being confirmed with this congress, I hope Durbin switches her out with either DeAndrea G. Benjamin or Jabari Wamble & save her for the next hearing since whoever is in that hearing won’t stand any chance of being confirmed before the midterms anyway.


    • I just can’t really agree that Rikelman is the very best. She spent a decade representing corporate interests at NBC, which is why I gave her a B+. Several judges, including Bloomekatz, Abudu, and Freeman are considerably better than Rikelman for me.

      The other thing is that almost all Democratic nominees are solid on the cultural issues like abortion, LGBT issues, voting rights, and civil rights (J. Michelle Childs is an exception in that she is very likely conservative on everything). What separates the progressives from the establishment moderate types regarding judges are corporate power and criminal justice issues. In other words, a labor/plaintiffs lawyer, criminal defender, or public interest attorney is likely to be solid on the cultural issues, while a culturally liberal corporate lawyer or prosecutor is not necessarily the opposite.


      • Oh I was talking strictly on abortion rights only, not on any other subject. When it comes to pro choice advocacy, I was saying she is the most outspoken nominee I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. Now at the end of the day almost all Biden judges will most likely vote the same way when it forms to abortion issues. I’m strictly just talking about careers pre-nomination & on that one issue.


      • And that’s my point. Almost all Democratic nominees will vote the same way on abortion and LGBT issues. While there are many Democratic nominees who will vote far more conservatively on workers rights than Sung, Abudu, or Bloomekatz, or on criminal justice issues than Freeman. Which makes the latter set FAR more valuable as nominees, and deserving of a higher grade.

        There is another reason to hold Rikelman for the last hearing before the election. Rikelman is a Ukrainian immigrant, and perhaps that issue can be also woven into the narrative during the hearing.


      • Yea but in regards to getting confirmed, I believe you have mentioned in the past you don’t believe Manchin would vote for an openly pro choice nominee. That’s my reasoning for her hearing being postponed. If your correct, then there’s no chance in a 50/50 senate she will be confirmed. So the earliest would be January with an increase of the majority.

        I don’t think Manchin would vote against nominees as strong on the other issues you mentioned as she is on choice. But I do agree with you on her being from Ukraine being a second reason to postpone her until the next hearing or maybe even the hearing after that one which should be the closest to the midterms.

        If Schumer can keep up the 20 hours or less average for circuit court confirmations, there’s an outside chance of the circuit court nominees from next weeks hearing getting a confirmation vote before the new year I’m this congress. Durbin mine as well give the slot to somebody who actually has a chance at getting 50 votes.

        Btw I don’t see the 3rd circuit nominees from last weeks hearing added to tomorrow’s agenda. I guess they will be held over next week instead of this week. I still don’t understand that strategy.


      • @Dequan

        I would be surprised if Manchin were to vote for Rikelman, and I doubt he will. However, it would not surprise me here if Collins or Murkowski are willing to vote for Rikelman. There are no blue slip issues regarding Rikelman.

        As I’ve said before, the nominees that should be fast tracked (in addition to Freeman/Bloomekatz/Abudu) are Pan, Garcia, Kahn, and Chung. They decide majorities on their circuits. I would probably move up Benjamin/Wamble as well for the same reason.


      • I do think Murkowski is more possible then Manchin. First off, she worked in Alaska for several years after law school. Second, any confirmation vote would be after Election Day when Murkowski wouldn’t have to face voters for 6 more years. Collins is a smaller chance but probably still better chance then Manchin unless The White House already got his approval beforehand which I doubt.


      • Yea I think Murkowski could be the 50th vote. Particularly after the election. Thank God for Rank Choice. I still can’t believe Alaska has it. Too bad they didn’t have it when Mark Beich lost re-election. The senate could be a totally different place today with that one extra Democrat.


      • @Dequan

        Looking at the results from the 2014 Alaska election, I don’t know Begich would have won with ranked choice TBH.
        I think you would have had Begich with Dan Sullivan, Joe Miller, and Mead Treadwell as your final four. I doubt that in the 2014 environment that Begich gets much more than 40% in the first round, and unless Miller makes the final two, Begich loses to Sullivan.

        But had Begich won in 2014, I think he would have held the seat in 2020.


      • Yea I agree he would have lost losing the numbers from that year. I was more thinking if there were ranked choice, Democrats & himself might have done some things different since they knew he would have had a chance. Perhaps pump some money propping up the lesser of the Republicans running.

        And indefinitely agree with you he probably would have won in 2020 if so. Sucks but I’ll at least take Alaska has Rank Choice now. At least we get a Democrat at large House member for 3 months & hopefully longer as well as a moderate Republican senator. Neither would be probable next year without Rank Choice.


  10. Shawn is an imbecile and i am beginning to think he is a racist the more he speaks, his unhealthy and insane obsession with slandering michelle childs has been long documented, constantly undervaluing her acheivements and making her seem to be some sort of unqualified hack, this pattern has been constant with this guy for months now, no day goes by he doesn’t insult or even question the intellect of michelle childs. Shawn you are a piece of shit human being and a racist and thats the end of it. How many more times those this man have to rail and insult and question childs intellect and smarts before he is banned from here. imbecile

    Liked by 1 person

    • This comment speaks for itself when it comes to determining that aangren is a clear troll.

      BTW J. Michelle Childs is an unqualified for the DC Circuit, whose only real “qualification” for the DC Circuit is her political patronage. Also this user’s strong defense of J. Michelle Childs makes it more clear that the rest of their comments complaining about the Democrat’s performance on judicial nominees is highly insincere.


      • Okay your a racist asshole that’s clear i will engage you as racist shawn from now on. Your unhealthy obsession with denigrating and question michelle intellect, qualification even months after her confirmation, your constant rants and tirades against her has gone way out of bounds. your a racist bigot that should be clear to everyone from now on. Troll.

        Shawn is a vile racist and everyone should be aware of that fact and address all responses to him from that lense.


  11. @Dequan
    I’m pretty sure that the chair has to keep off the agenda the nominees that haven’t finished and submitted their written questions. So the delay is probably with the nominees. I know the delay sucks and I’m no Durbin apologist, but I care about procedures and rules lol.


  12. Senators Cramer, Cruz, and Moran all missed the Sarah A. L. Merriam confirmation vote just now. If even one of them are out all day, Schumer really should keep the senate in past the normal 3pm & confirm Freeman with the two votes she needs. The VP wouldn’t be needed since all 50 Dems are in town.


  13. Good to see merriam confirmed , although it sucks that freeman is going to get delayed for days/weeks simply due to schumer mistiming and incompetence. Would be nice with all 50 democrats present if discharge votes can be made for nancy abudu and ho, the senators barely work as it is


    • Baldwin just announced that the gay marriage bill is coming after the midterms. Personally I feel that is a mistake because a vote would be good politics and the bill itself is badly needed. But if this is a deal she made with some wavering GOP senators then perhaps I can understand the rationale.

      The one positive may be that judges could continue being confirmed unabated.

      Monday: Cloture vote Pan
      Tuesday: Confirm Pan, Reconsider Freeman, Confirm Freeman, Cloture Pryor
      Wednesday: Confirm Pryor, discharge Abudu, Cloture Garcia
      Thursday: Confirm Garcia, Cloture Douglas

      That even keeps the one vote on Monday and a short Thursday, which I know they like. Then the last week of September you can confirm Douglas, do a day of discharge votes, and then spend Wednesday/Thursday on confirmations for district nominees.

      Wishful thinking for sure, but it would be very feasible without breaking any norms. That would have the senate nearly completely caught up on judges and in October you can vote on a few messaging bills and confirm Bloomkatz, Abudu, Chang, Montgomery Reeves, and anyone else who is still lingering out there.


    • I don’t think Shawn is racist but it’s interesting seeing how often in the last few months I’ve seen him throw a temper tantrum like a 10 year old at the grocery store demanding ice cream and a candy bar and not be made to pick.

      I’ve yet to see a week go by where he doesn’t say he’ll vote, donate and hope for a Republican win unless Democrats nominate and confirm judges to his liking.

      Frankly, I’m amazed how often everyone pats him on the head and just moves on instead of pointing out how ridiculous his rants are.


    • I don’t think Shawn is racist but in the months I’ve been here reading comments it’s wild how many times I’ve seen him throw a temper tantrum like a kid wailing at the top of his lungs because he was told he could get ice cream or candy, but not both.

      I’ve yet to see a week go by where he doesn’t threaten to vote, donate and hope for a Republican win unless Democrats nominate and confirm judges to his liking.

      Frankly, I’m amazed how often everyone pats him on the head and just moves on instead of pointing out how ridiculous entitled his opinion of himself and his rants are.


    • So there’s different degrees of my disagreement with @Shawn on various issues. For instance when it comes to J Childs as a DC Circuit court judge, we both completely agree she was a horrible choice. But we disagree on the reasons.

      When it comes to if big law firm partners nominees being progressive, I actually think we have more of an agreement on that subject then we do on other issues. I too would like Biden to pick more under represented nominees to the federal bench (And I think he has & is doing a great job in that area) then your normal, run of the mill prosecutors or big law firm partners.

      My biggest disagreement with @Shawn in this area would be to automatically downgrade a nominee as soon as I see they were a law firm partner. Now I will give him credit, when it’s obvious a nominee worked for a big law firm for a few years out of law school they probably did so to pay off their student debts. And he has recognized those obviously great nominees who has that in their background. But he’s a little harsh on some others that I think are perfectly fine so we do disagree their… Lol

      It all comes down to what your looking for in judicial nominees. For me, here is what I’m looking for;

      1. Circuit court nominees & district court nominees from blue states – Young & progressive. Here is where you should be maximizing on your nominees in their 40’s if not 30’s. Also we should be getting some nominees from under represented backgrounds like labor & union lawyers, Innocent Project, ACLU, public defenders, etc.

      There are some exceptions I would give. If a nominee was nominated by Obama & never given a vote I would give some deference (Ex: Regina Rodriguez). Also if they are extremely progressive I would waive the age (Ex: Nina Morrison).

      2. For district court nominees in purple states – I am willing to except compromises here only if they are much better then leaving the seats vacant. For instance, in Pennsylvania John Frank Murphy was an acceptable Republican pick to get three public defenders, 2 Black woman & 1 Latina & one of them 41 years old. Now if the Republican pick would have been somebody more in the mold of Chad Meredith, then I would say Hell no. This is another area me & @Shawn disagree on. He feels a Chad Meredith’s is worth 2 or 3 Arianna Freeman. I don’t agree with that.

      3. District court nominees in red states – In these cases I start with the position I would rather leave the seat vacant. If the Republicans can give me a package of nominees I can live with, I would take it but I would push the narrative I’m more then willing to leave the seats vacant. Plus there are so many vacancies in the examples above, there’s no reason to waste senate floor time on this category unless its truly a consensus nominees.


    • The first thing is that I am not saying a Big Law partner cannot be progressive. I’m sure there are some who are. What I’m saying is that they are far too overrepresented on the federal bench and Democratic nominees should be selected from elsewhere whenever possible. If the BigLaw person is the most progressive choice, then I will be willing to consider them.

      Secondly, it matters what kind of work and who you represented in BigLaw. Union busting management lawyers and those who defend corporate interests who are accused of discrimination in civil rights cases should be totally disqualified from being appointed as a judge or even working in a Democratic administration. Same with those who spend a career defending polluters. I would also put those who regularly defend class action lawsuits as another set of attorneys who should be avoided for judicial appointments. It is a disqualification to regularly represent corporations against regular people who have been harmed.
      OTOH, I would look at lawyers whose primary work is say in IP with much less skepticism.

      Thirdly, how long someone spent in BigLaw. I am a lot more tolerant of attorneys who spent a few years early in their career in BigLaw to pay off student loans than I am for corporate partners.

      Fourth, what else did you do in your career and what progressive credentials does one have. That includes both other positions as well as pro bono in their Big Law career.

      I also want to reiterate what I said above. Almost all Democratic nominees are solid on the cultural issues like abortion, LGBT issues, voting rights, and civil rights (J. Michelle Childs is an exception here, in addition to being unqualified). What separates the progressives from the establishment moderate types regarding judges are corporate power and criminal justice issues. In other words, a labor/plaintiffs lawyer, criminal defender, or public interest attorney is very likely to be solid on the cultural issues, while a culturally liberal corporate lawyer or prosecutor is not necessarily progressive on economic or criminal justice issues.

      The problem I have using just pro bono work is that there are plenty of BigLaw liberals who are progressive on cultural issues (and for that matter voting rights) for that matter but turn out to be corporate lackeys or criminal hardliners. A good example is Neal Katyal, who is always on MSNBC, but regularly represented anti-union interests and supported Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. Even Justice Ginsburg was less than progressive on economic issues, and Breyer was right of center.
      And few irritate me more than the lawyers who talk a big game about DEI and chest thump about how anti-racist they are, while turning around and representing corporations who engage in discrimination in civil rights cases.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I actually agree with most of what @Shawn said. With the exception of…

        1. J. Michelle Childs being unqualified (Although once again I agree she was a horrible choice).

        2. “Union busting management lawyers and those who defend corporate interests who are accused of discrimination in civil rights cases should be totally disqualified from being appointed as a judge or even working in a Democratic administration.”

        3. “It is a disqualification to regularly represent corporations against regular people who have been harmed.”

        I actually agree with everything else said. I won’t rehash #1, but as for #2 & #3, it’s not so much that I disagree that we should stay away from that kind of judicial nominees, but I wouldn’t say it is a disqualifier. People have different realities & life options. Somebody can work for a corporation like the ones @Shawn mentioned but I would still look at the individual & give them an opportunity to show they themselves do not agree with all of the same things their corporation does.

        A perfect example of this would be Dana Douglas. She worked 17 years for a big oil corporation. Based on that, @Shawn would disqualify her. But when you look at her background, she actually has some progressive things in her in her career. I by no means think she was the most progressive choice from Louisianna, nor would she have been my first choice, but I don’t think she should be disqualified & I am fine with her nomination.

        But I do mostly agree despite my slight differences.

        Liked by 1 person

      • @Dequan

        My strong disagreement with you on J. Michelle Childs boils down to this, you think she is “horrible”, I think she is the worst nominee by a Democratic President since JFK and maybe Truman. (I could go either way with Byron White on whether he is worse or better than Childs). You think she is not progressive enough and too old, I strongly believe that she is an outright conservative. You think she is qualified, I think she is outright an unqualified hack and only a patronage appointment.
        In other words, I see J. Michelle Childs as a *much* worse nominee than you do, and as such I strongly believe that 20 progressives does not make up for the appoint of Childs.


      • @Dequan

        As far as your other comments, let me ask you this. Would you be say it should be a disqualification for a Democratic nominee who represents anti-choice clients? What about a religious organization who is anti-LGBT? How about if they represented a state trying to restrict the vote?
        If the answer to any of these questions is yes, why should these things be disqualifications, while representation of anti-worker and anti-environmental interests are not?


      • So to me, if a lawyer worked for a corporation or law firm that had anti-choice, anti-LGBT or restrict the vote clients, that would fall into what I said regarding it would be unlikely I would support them, however it would be incumbent on the nominees record to show me they individually did not support those ideals. For instance, let’s say Holly Thomas worked at a law firm that had clients like that but she herself had the exact same record she does now. I would likely scrutinize her much more then I would other possible nominees but at the end of the day if she personally wasn’t heavily involved with those ideals, I wouldn’t hold it against her.

        Now if a potential nominee was in a group that was advocating those ideals, I would hold it against them. For instance (I’m intentionally going to take my example to the extreme here) if a potential nominee worked for a law firm that represented members of the Ku Klux Klan, that in itself wouldn’t be a disqualified to me. If that same person was themselves a member of the Ku Klux Klan then that would be a disqualifier. Now I know what your gonna say. What about Justice Hugo Black. Well as I said before I would have gotten that wrong back in the 1930’s because I would have voted against him, however I think your morally bankrupted if your a member of the KKK, but not for defending them in court because everybody, yes even the worst of the worst deserves a defense & representation in a fair trial when we live in a democracy.

        As for J. Childs, yes those are our fundamental differences. I can’t in anyway say she is the worst Democrat nominee when past president’s have put borderline, if not out right racist on the bench. As I mentioned, we just have a fundamental difference as to if 1 Chad Meredith (I’m not calling him racist, just using the most extreme Biden example) is worth 3 Arianna Freeman’s. I don’t agree with you that it’s worth it. The ratio would have to be higher then 3 to 1 for me. Maybe 5 to 1 I would consider it, which is a ratio the Republicans would never agree to. I would rather the deal we got for the 4 Pennsylvania district court nominees where John Murphy is an acceptable Republican nominee over a 3 for 1 deal like the example I just gave.

        Now as for Childs being unqualified, I completely disagree with you. She has been a district court judge for over a decade. She had a long legal career prior to that & in a state where minorities in general, Black woman specifically just didn’t accomplish what she did very often. As for her not being qualified to sit on the DC circuit , she had a Masters in Law. As I’ve jokingly said before, they don’t just give those out. I’m more then confident she can figure out any short comings she has fairly quickly once she is on the bench.

        I think somebody can be a horrible nominee for a certain seat as I do think Childs is for the DC circuit, without thinking they are unqualified or worst then an outright racist. So we definitely have a fundamental difference there. But I do agree with a lot of what else you said.


      • @Dequan, good post. As you know I’m more bullish than either of you and I think that Childs will be a solid center left judge that is great on civil rights, voting rights, abortion, and oversight of the Trump administration. I do admit that her coziness on corporate interests is concerning and I do not like many of her criminal justice decisions.

        I hope that she will move leftward now on some of these issues now that she is not a district court judge in SC. I fully admit that I am biased being from the same area as her and I know many people (who are strongly liberal) that have argued in front of her over the years and rave about how great she is.


      • @Joe

        Thanks. I hate to be an apologist for J. Childs because I really think she was a horrible pick for the DC Circuit, but I can’t agree with anybody that says she’s unqualified despite my opinion about her nomination. I too think she will turn out to be more liberal on the circuit court then her career & district court service. I still wouldn’t have picked her for the seat, especially with a seat on the 4th circuit vacant in South Carolina, but let’s hope she turns out better then advertised.

        But even if she doesn’t, I can’t say she’s worse then an out right racist appointed by a Democrat. I’d rather Biden nominate Janice Rogers Brown then an open white male racist in exchange for 2 liberals in my opinion.


  14. The imbecile racist shawn continues his insane tirade against michelle childs, how long until this troll is banned? The D.C. circuit is conservative by any stretch and neither is childs ”conservative”
    Any democratically appointed judge is better than the federalist society hacks biden has appointed.
    When you keep crying wolf you lose all benefit of the doubt, the racist once again calls childs unqualified, a woman with more than 10 years on the district court who has overseen hundreds of cases, earned all her deegres fairly. Shawn your an imbecile.
    i advise others to ignore the troll


  15. Word correction: Any democrat judge is better than federalist society hacks trump has appointed. His constant tirade against childs has gone beyond the pale of valid critic, calling a woman with over a decade on a district court and with tons of experience is nonsese but expected from a racist hack like shawn.


  16. ”You think she is qualified, I think she is outright an unqualified hack ”
    This is a direct statement from the racist imbecile troll shawn calling childs a black woman with more than than a decade on a federal district court , hearing hundreds of criminal and civil cases unqualified, there is simply no objective metric to justify that type of language from this vile bigot.
    I dare anyone to tell me how shawns words of childs being ”unqualified hack” warrants anything but contempt and condemnation.
    He is a vile troll and open racist , at this point either your deliberately ignoring it or agree with it.


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