by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
As some conservative activists blast U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a National Review Online column from Jonathan Tobin highlights one area in which McConnell’s work clearly has helped the conservative cause.
[I]t might behoove those grassroots activists to think about what the majority leader and his caucus are doing to advance the one element of the Trump agenda that most on the right have always considered a priority: putting conservatives on the federal courts.
As the New York Times reported on the front page of their Sunday edition this past weekend, the Trump administration has outpaced all of its predecessors in terms of the swiftness with which it has nominated and confirmed federal judges. So far, eight of Trump’s 18 nominees to the federal appellate courts have been pushed through, with a ninth just approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee and on his way to certain confirmation by the full Senate. And as the Times documents, Trump’s nominees are more conservative than those put forward by past Republican presidents.
As they cheer these victories and gloat over the quotes from horrified liberals in the Times feature, conservatives should recognize that they have one man to thank above all others: the same Mitch McConnell who [Steve] Bannon claims is sabotaging Trump. …
… McConnell has been able to rally and unite the GOP caucus around Trump’s judicial nominees in a way that he wasn’t able to unite it around an effort to repeal and replace Obamacare. As a result, Trump’s nominees are being pushed through the fast lane to confirmation with remarkable efficiency.