Battle Over Judgeships Brings Virginia Senate to a Standstill


A partisan battle over judicial appointments left the Virginia Senate at a standstill Tuesday, with members prevented by procedural rules from voting on any legislation or even conducting committee meetings until the matter was resolved, reports the Washington Post. The House of Delegates and Senate eventually found a way out of the impasse, at least for the next few days, by postponing the matter until Thursday. But Senate Minority Leader Richard L. Saslaw (D-Fairfax) indicated that Democrats would continue to flex whatever muscle they had left after this month's GOP takeover by opposing all new judicial nominations.

The heated showdown — coming just weeks into the session and over two judicial nominees not considered the least bit controversial — raised concerns that it will be a rocky session for Richmond's evenly split upper chamber. “This is a residual consequence of bruised political egos,” said Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment (R-James City), suggesting that Democrats were using “political extortion” to get back at Republicans after they declined to share power in the 20-20 chamber.

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