Political Report Notebook: Leahy calls for judicial confirmation
BY RANDY KREHBIEL World Staff Writer
Sunday, December 02, 2012
12/02/12 at 6:17 AM
U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, called late last week for confirmation of 19 federal judicial nominations blocked by Senate Republicans.
Among those on the list are two Oklahomans: John Dowdell of Tulsa, nominated for the Northern District of Oklahoma, and Robert Bacharach of Oklahoma City, nominated for the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Neither is considered controversial, and both have had the backing of the state's two Republican senators.
"There is no justification for holding up final Senate action on the 19 judicial nominations that have been approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee and are pending on the Senate Executive Calendar," Leahy said in a statement read into the Congressional Record.
"It is time for the obstruction to end and for the Senate to complete action on these nominees so that they may serve the American people without further delay. Delay for delay's sake is wrong and should end."
Inhofe blasts Dem "obsession": U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe said during debate late Thursday that Democrats have an "obsession" with raising taxes that "flies in the face of history."
California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer, a frequent Inhofe sparring partner, replied that Republicans seemed obsessed with protecting "millionaires and billionaires" at the expense of all other Americans.
Laffer theories challenged: A group concerned primarily with examining state business incentives fired a broadside last week at tax and economic policies that have gained considerable currency with Oklahoma's Republican leadership in recent years.
Good Jobs First released a report called "Selling Snake Oil to the States" that attacks the work of economist Arthur Laffer and the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative organization with success molding state law to suit business interests.
Backed by the Ford Foundation and other major nonprofits, Good Jobs First has in the past argued that most state and local tax incentives are of dubious value for overall economic development. In "Selling Snake Oil to the States," it says the main objectives of the tax-cutting policies advocated by Laffer and ALEC are political, not economic.
The report claims "virtually no relationship" between the ALEC-Laffer state rankings and long-term economic growth.
Tulsa Dems celebrate: The Tulsa County Democratic Party will have its holiday luncheon at 11:30 a.m. Dec. 14 at Baxter's Interurban Grill, 717 S. Houston Ave. Those attending are encouraged to bring toys and books for underprivileged children.
RSVP to email@example.com.