Judiciary Punts Vote on Goodwin Liu

Posted May 6, 2010 at 3:26pm

The Senate Judiciary Committee delayed voting on Goodwin Liu’s controversial nomination to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday after Republicans requested more time to consider the nomination.

Judiciary ranking member Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) said Republicans were still reviewing Liu’s questionnaire and had concerns about his public speeches and appearances made over the course of his academic career.

Liu, whose confirmation hearing was on April 19, has emerged as one of President Barack Obama’s most controversial court picks. While he is likely to be approved in committee along party lines, his outlook on the floor is far less certain. Sessions did not say whether he would filibuster the nomination, but he promised that “this nomination will have a substantial floor debate.”

By delaying action one week, the Judiciary panel could very well return to Liu’s nomination just as it begins reviewing Obama’s next Supreme Court pick. The White House has said Obama would announce his selection in the coming days.