WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is reshaping the federal judiciary in Texas with remarkable efficiency, positioning the Republican to leave a decades-long imprint on the Lone Star State no matter whether he secures re-election next year.
His conservative judicial push comes with significant assistance from Texas Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, fellow Republicans who are working to expedite the process in the GOP-run Senate. Trump-appointed judges now make up a plurality on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers Texas and two other states at a step below the Supreme Court. They could likewise soon make up a plurality in Texas at the district court level, which sits below the appeals court.
While the lower courts lack the power and profile of the Supreme Court, they still wield vast influence simply because they handle most of the work in the federal judiciary. Those venues in Texas hold particular importance.
That’s because the state often ends up having an outsize role in hot-button matters, requiring lower court judges — who receive lifetime appointments — to handle key cases on everything from immigration to health care to patent law.
“This is going to be the most enduring legacy of President Trump’s time in office,” Cornyn said in an interview, hailing the commander in chief’s attention to openings up and down the federal bench.GO READ THE WHOLE THING.