President Trump has nominated 50 candidates to lifetime appointments to the federal bench — including a man who asserted transgender children were evidence of “Satan’s plan,” one deemed unqualified by the American Bar Association and a handful of prolific bloggers, Politico reports. The GOP has unanimously stuck by Trump’s judges. Senate Republicans have cleared judicial nominees at a comparatively rapid clip this year — even as the conservative base has complained they’re not moving fast enough — and are planning to pick up the pace even more in the coming months. Among the more eyebrow-raising judges is Charles Goodwin, who has been nominated to the federal bench in Oklahoma. He is the first judicial nominee since 2006 to earn a “not qualified” label from the American Bar Association, which has screened judicial candidates since the 1950s.
Both of his Republican home-state senators, James Lankford and Jim Inhofe, say they’re still confident Goodwin is adequately qualified to serve on the bench and dismissed the ABA’s findings. “He’s been a very solid jurist,” Lankford said. “We’re trying to find out the whys [of the ABA rating]. Of course, they’re very secretive about the process and why they make the decisions they do.” The defense underscores Republicans’ commitment to remaking the federal judiciary for generations to come, even as the Senate GOP and Trump have butted heads on other issues and struggled to carry out their broader legislative agenda. “The judge story is an untold story,” Trump said Monday at a news conference with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. “When you think about it, Mitch and I were saying, that has consequences 40 years out, depending on the age of the judge, but 40 years out.”