Washington, D.C.– Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor on Senate votes this week to confirm the nomination of Julie Rikelman to serve as a Circuit Court Judge for the First Circuit and the confirmation of Natasha Merle to be a District Court Judge for the Eastern District of New York, who would be the 100th District Court Judge confirmed under President Biden. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:
Later today, the Senate will vote on the confirmation of Julie Rikelman to serve as Circuit Court Judge for the First Circuit.
For years, Ms. Rikelman has had a hand in some of the most important legal fights over women’s rights and civil liberties. She was the attorney who defended the Mississippi clinic in the Dobbs case that ultimately overturned Roe.
Few lawyers have fought harder, smarter, and more effectively to protect women’s rights in America than Ms. Rikelman. On the bench I am confident she will serve with excellence to uphold the Constitution.
Appointments to the Circuit Court are essential; the lion’s share of all federal cases are decided at the Circuit Court level, so it’s necessary these vacancies are swiftly filled with exceptional nominees like Ms. Rikelman.
This week, the Senate will also advance the nomination of Natasha Merle to be a District Judge in the Eastern District of New York.
With Ms. Merle’s confirmation, the Senate will reach a major milestone: one hundred district judges confirmed by Senate Democrats under President Biden.
Many of these one hundred judges have knocked down longstanding barriers to the halls of justice: the first Muslim district judge, the first women of color to be district judges in Maryland and Oregon, the first openly LBGTQ judge in Puerto Rico, and the list could go on and on.
District judges are an important reason why our federal judiciary is far more balanced, far more diverse, and far more experienced than the one we just had just a few years ago.
So hitting this milestone of 100 district judges is very significant, and Senate Democrats will continue moving forward on more judges in the weeks and months to come.