"For the benefit of the people of this country that have been listening to the complaints in the Senate from senators about not approving judges, let me remind everybody that, at this point, we've approved over 220 judges," Grassley said on the Senate floor. "Only two have been disapproved. That's more than 99 percent."Of course, it was purely coincidental that Grassley made his claim while in the middle of forcing a procedural delay on a vote to confirm—drumroll please—a judicial nomination.
By this week, Grassley said, the Senate will have confirmed 50 of Obama's judicial nominees during his second term in office, which compares to 21 at this point in President George W. Bush's second term.
"So that's 50 to 21, the production of this Congress for approving judges," he said.
I guess if his stats were meaningful, it would be kind of impressive that Republicans could have such a strong record of cooperation while simultaneously taking advantage of every procedural roadblock available to them, but the stats he cited don't show what he claims they do.
His 99 percent statistic reflects floor activity only. Only about three quarters of Obama's nominees have actually gotten that far, compared with over 90 percent for Bush. And the reason that more Obama nominees have been confirmed in his second term than at this point in Bush's second term is that Obama has appointed more judges because there are more vacancies.
But hey, even though he's full of it, at least Grassley thinks it's a good move for Republicans to claim they are supportive of President Obama. Baby steps, right?