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Center Urges Unobstructed Floor Vote on Miguel Estrada

"The constitution reads 'advise and consent' not 'obstruct and delay,'" said Jeffrey Mazzella, the Center's Sr. Vice President of Legislative Affairs."




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Contact: Jeffrey Mazzella

February 11, 2003


Center Urges Unobstructed Floor Vote on Miguel Estrada

ALEXANDRIA, Va.— As the full Senate considers the confirmation of Miguel Estrada to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, the Center for Individual Freedom today reminded all 100 Senators of their constitutional responsibility to the judicial confirmation process.

"The constitution reads 'advise and consent' not 'obstruct and delay,'" said Jeffrey Mazzella, the Center's Sr. Vice President of Legislative Affairs. "That means all 100 Senators should be permitted to cast their yea or nay vote. Miguel Estrada, who is slated to be the first Hispanic ever to serve on the D.C. Circuit, has been waiting an astonishing 643 days, and counting," Mazzella continued.

Despite Estrada's remarkable academic and legal record, Senate Democrats, led by Charles Schumer (D-NY), Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Edward Kennedy (D-MA), are threatening to filibuster Estrada's confirmation -- a deceitful and partisan move that will prevent the Senate from fulfilling its constitutional obligation.

"It's ironic that these leaders have railed against such obstructionist tactics in the past," noted Mazzella.

"I have stated over and over again ...that I would object and fight against any filibuster on a judge,
whether it is somebody I opposed or supported."

Senator Patrick Leahy
Congressional Record, June 18, 1998

"Senators who feel strongly about the issue of fairness should vote for cloture, even if they intend to vote against the nomination itself. It is wrong to filibuster this nomination, and Senators who believe in fairness will not let a minority of the Senate deny [the nominee] his vote by the entire Senate."

Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA)
Congressional Record, June 21, 1995

"Perhaps the Senators should follow their own advice. A full Senate vote on Miguel Estrada is long overdue. The continued partisan brinksmanship is only undermining the constitutional integrity of the process and destroying the efficacy of the federal judiciary," Mazzella concluded.

The Center has dedicated a portion of its website,, to the confirmation process entitled "Confirmation Watch," where it provides an up-to-date list of judicial nominees awaiting confirmation by the Senate and frequently highlights the credentials of the nominees.

Founded in 1998, the Center for Individual Freedom is a non-partisan constitutional advocacy group that fights to protect and defend individual freedoms and rights in the legal, legislative and educational arenas. The Center does not endorse or oppose any of the judicial nominees. Our purpose on this issue is to encourage the timely fulfillment of the Senate's constitutional duty to the confirmation process.


[Posted February 12, 2003]