Know a Nominee: Thomas Kirsch to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals
Do you support Kirsch’s nomination?
by Causes | 12.15.20
UPDATE 12/15/20 (5:50pm EST) - The Senate voted 51-44 along party-lines to confirm Thomas Kirsch II to be a judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
UPDATE 12/14/20 (6:30pm EST) - The Senate voted 51-42 on Monday to limit further debate on Kirsch's nomination to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, setting up a confirmation vote on Tuesday.
The Senate is expected to consider the nomination of Thomas Kirsch II to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Kirsch would fill the vacancy created by the elevation of Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett. Here’s what you need to know about the nominee:
Who is Thomas Kirsch?
- Kirsch, 46, is a U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Indiana and has served in that role since the Senate confirmed him on a voice vote in October 2017. He previously served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of Indiana from 2001 to 2008, then worked as a partner at Winston & Strawn from 2008 to 2017, where he focused on complex litigation and investigations.
- Kirsch received his undergraduate degree in economics and political science, with highest distinction, from Indiana University, and earned his law degree from Harvard Law School.
- After graduating from law school, Kirsch was a law clerk for Judge John Daniel Tinder of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.
What’s the outlook for his confirmation?
- The Senate Judiciary Committee advanced Kirsch’s circuit court nomination on a party-line 12-10 vote on December 10th, with all Republicans in favor and all Democrats opposed.
- Democrats expressed opposition to Kirsch’s nomination because he is a white man and would sit on the only federal appellate court that has no judges of color, and because President Donald Trump lost his re-election bid.
- The American Bar Association’s judicial nomination rating panel gave Kirsch’s circuit court nomination a unanimous rating of “well qualified”.
What does it mean for the Seventh Circuit?
- Kirsch’s confirmation would fill a position that became vacant on October 26th following the elevation of Amy Coney Barrett to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court. Barrett’s duty station was in South Bend, Indiana.
- The Seventh Circuit has 11 active judgeships. Of the judges currently on the bench, two were appointed by Ronald Reagan, one by George H.W. Bush, one by Bill Clinton, one by George W. Bush, one by Barack Obama, and three by Donald Trump. Kirsch’s confirmation would fill one of the two vacancies.
— Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: iStock / imaginima)
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