Mississippi Loses Seat on Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals

President Trump announced his nominations for the vacant seats on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday. The slots are going to two Texans and two Louisianans. This apparently includes the seat held by the retiring Judge Grady Jolly, whose chambers are in Jackson. Louisiana gained a seat.
Here is a link to a How Appealing Blog post that links articles covering the nominations. This A.P. report confirms that one nomination is for the seat held by Judge Jolly. Here is the A.P.’s blurb on the picks:
The White House on Thursday announced the nominations of U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt of New Orleans and Kyle Duncan, a Washington lawyer and former solicitor general in the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office, to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Also nominated were James C. Ho, a Texas lawyer who has served in the U.S. Attorney General’s Office; and Don Willett, a justice on the Texas Supreme Court.
My Take:
Could someone please wake up Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker? They just had their pockets picked.
Justice Willett is probably the most expected of the four, since he was a finalist for the U.S. Supreme Court nomination that went to Justice Gorsuch. Willett probably has a decent shot of getting a Supreme Court nomination later.
The major story in Mississippi is that a Mississippian was not nominated to fill Judge Jolly’s seat. It’s hard to interpret this as anything other than an abject failure by Mississippi Senators Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker to protect their turf.
With a Republican in the White House, Cochran and Wicker should have viewed the Jolly seat as their seat to fill. They apparently just let it go to Louisiana. That’s weak.
It will be interesting to see if Chris McDaniel pounces on this as a campaign issue in the looming Republican civil war primary

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