WASHINGTON — After months of Republican stalling, the Senate on Tuesday unanimously confirmed John E. Dowdell to be a U.S. district judge in Tulsa.
The 95-0 vote, joined by Republican leaders who have been blocking votes on President Barack Obama's judicial nominations, came six months after Dowdell sailed through the Judiciary Committee only to get caught up in presidential politics.
Senate Republicans have yet to allow a vote on another Oklahoma judicial nominee: Robert E. Bacharach, a federal magistrate judge in Oklahoma City who has been nominated for a seat on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, a step below the U.S. Supreme Court.
Republicans had been holding up most nominations in hopes that Mitt Romney would win the presidency and substitute his own nominations for the ones made by Obama. Since the president won re-election on Nov. 6, Republicans have allowed votes only on a few that had been stalled.
20 still waiting
The Senate on Tuesday also confirmed a district court nominee from California. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said last week that 20 nominees are still awaiting votes.