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Democratic leader defends fight over judicial confirmations

[JURIST] During the weekly Democratic radio address [WTOP audio] Saturday, Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid [official website] defended his party's position in the current battle between Democrats and Republicans over President Bush's judicial nominees [JURIST news archive] and procedures used to consider them, the second time in two weeks [JURIST report] that major Democrats have used Saturday radio airtime to press their points. Republicans have threatened to ban Senate filibusters of judicial nominees. Coined the “nuclear option” [Center for Information Freedom report], Republicans want to eliminate the 60 votes needed to end a filibuster over presidential appointees. Reid referred to the a battle as a fight between Democrats who believe in checks and balances and Republicans who do not, and stated that without the judicial filibuster, "the U.S. Senate becomes merely a rubber stamp for the president". Ten of President Bush’s 214 nominations have been stalled by filibusters. Reid also lashed out at remarks [JURIST report] made by Republican leader Tom DeLay referring to the comments as threats against judges who protect our rights. AP has more.

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