Senate Judiciary Panel Adds Six Nominees to its Thursday Agenda
By Stephanie Woodrow | January 25, 2022 3:35 pm

The Senate Judiciary Committee has added six nominations to the agenda for its Thursday business meeting — three U.S. Attorney nominees and three controversial figures nominated to be Assistant Attorneys General.

Andre Birotte Jr. (gov)

Ron Machen (Wilmer Hale)

The three U.S. Attorney nominees are Andre Birotte Jr. (Central District of California), Richard Hartunian (Northern District of New York) and Ronald Machen (District of Columbia). All three were nominated Dec. 23. Read more about Birotte here. Read more about Hartunian here. Read more about Machen here.

The agenda also includes three high ranking Justice Department appointees whose nominations were not acted on by the Senate last year and whose nominations were returned to the White House at the end of last year’s session — Mary L. Smith to head the Justice Department’s Tax Division, Christopher Schroeder to head the Office of Legal Policy and Dawn Johnsen, to head the Office of Legal Counsel. President Obama re-nominated the three earlier this month.

Dawn Johnsen (Indiana University)

Although the names of Smith, Schroeder and Johnsen were placed on this week’s agenda, committee Republicans have the right to delay action for a week.

The panel’s top Republican, Jeff Sessions of Alabama, has formally asked committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to schedule another hearing on the Johnsen nomination. Leahy sent a letter to Sessions regarding the Republican’s request, a Senate aide told Main Justice. It is unclear what the letter said.

Sessions also said Republicans would likely support additional hearings on Smith and Schroeder as well, although he has not formally made such a request.

Andrew Ramonas contributed to this report.

This post has been updated from an earlier version.


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The Senate Democratic leader describes the Republicans' refusal to hold hearings on President Obama's eventual Supreme Court nominee "historically unbelievable and historically unprecedented."

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