Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Democratic Senators on Thursday agreed to confirm 15 of President Donald Trump's federal judge picks so they can return to their home states to campaign.
With Republicans holding the Senate majority, the 15 judges were likely to be confirmed anyway, even if Democrats attempted to force hours of debate for each one. That led to Senate Republican leader Chuck Schumer of New York making a deal with Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky to confirm the judges and allow for a recess, in order for candidates up for re-election to hit the campaign trail, Politico reported.
The addition of 15 federal judges days after the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court was seen as another win for the GOP with the November midterms on the horizon. And Democratic activists were not pleased.
"This deal was totally unnecessary and was a bitter pill to swallow so soon after the Kavanaugh fight that so many progressive activists poured their hearts and souls into," Chris Kang, the chief counsel of anti-Trump organization Demand Justice, said in a statement. "This period will be long remembered not just for the historic number of judges Trump has been able to confirm, but also because of how passive Democrats were in response."
NARAL, a pro-abortion rights organization, called the deal "especially painful" and decried the addition of judges that it says are anti-choice.
"Americans deserve better than deals cut at the expense of our liberty," the group said. "The anti-choice GOP should be ashamed [of] their blatant conservative court-packing."
With the addition of 15 judges, Trump has appointed 29 appeals court judges, which is far more than any other president since the creation of the regional circuit court system in 1891, The New York Times reported.
Approximately one out of every six appeals court judges in the country is a Trump pick.