Trump, with the help of an overwhelming majority of McConnell and the GOP Senate, significantly reshaped the judiciary during his first term, and the milestone of the 200th appointment illustrates how long his legacy will last, as federal judges hold lifelong meetings and many of Trump’s electors are young judges who can serve for many years.
“Court certificates are perhaps President Trump’s most important legacy,” CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said. “They will shape national laws on abortion, LGBT rights, voting rights and many other issues long after Trump leaves office.”
200 certificates will also be a permanent part of McConnell’s legacy. The Kentucky Republican, who is running for re-election this year, played a key role in changing Senate rules to speed up the process of confirming court appointments, thus removing the 60-vote threshold for minority filibusters.
On Wednesday by 52-48 votes, the Senate confirmed Wilson and filled the last currently available appellate position of the court. Democrats complained about Wilson’s position on voting rights and other issues, but could not stop his confirmation because approval requires only a simple majority vote.
McConnell expressed satisfaction with the achievement before the vote, saying, “Once we confirm Judge Wilson today, this Senate will confirm that 200 Trump presidential presidents have appointed federal benches for life.”
“And after the number 200, when we leave this chamber today, there will be no vacancy for a free court anywhere in the country in at least 40 years,” McConnell said.