The nominees are Patricia Ann Millett, Georgetown law professor Cornelia Pillard and U.S. District Court Judge Robert Leon Wilkins. Standing with the nominees, President Obama call them "outstanding, highly qualified individuals" that should receive an up or down vote.
He took the insane Republican accusation that he is attempting to "pack the court" head on: "We're trying to fill seats that are already existing ... I didn't create these seats. I didn't wake up one morning and decide 'let's add three seats to the court.'" He pointed out that in 2007, Congress passed a law moving one of the courts 12 seats, but affirming that the court needed 11 and that many of the same Republicans who voted to keep those 11 seats are now arguing that the court only really needs eight. But now, he said, with a Democrat as president "eight is suddenly enough."
He added that this court's decisions, the second highest in the land, "impact almost every aspect of our lives" and that the Constitution requires that he do his job in nominating qualified individuals to the judiciary and that it's the Senate's job to give them a timely up or down vote. "I hope the Senate does its part," he said, "because it's what the Constitution demands."
The Senate can't do it's job if the filibuster on nominations remains. It's within the power of the Democratic majority to end it, and see these nominees—and all the others that are being held up—confirmed and the judiciary functioning at full steam again.