- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 14, 2017

The SenateJudiciary Committee advanced four of President Trump’s judicial nominees Thursday, including one appeals court pick who won unanimous approval from the panel.

The committee voted 20-0 for District Court Judge Ralph Ericsson for the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Senators also approved two of Mr. Trump’s district court judges, Donald Coggins Jr. for the District of South Carolina and Dabney Friedrich for the District of Columbia, by voice votes.

But the committee was more divided on Stephen Schwartz, Mr. Trump’s nominee for the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, clearing him on an 11-9 party-line vote.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the ranking Democrat on the committee, said he has only nine years of legal experience.

“For federal district court and circuit judges, the American Bar Association has stated a nominee to the federal bench ordinarily should have at least 12 years experience in the practice of law,” Ms. Feinstein said.

Committee Chairman Charles E. Grassley countered that the experience Mr. Schwartz does have comes in litigating the kinds of issues he’d see on the Court of Federal Claims.

Now through the committee, all of the nominees face floor votes in the Senate before they’re confirmed.

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