Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that she believes that Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) should not retire, as her departure would impede President Biden’s ability to confirm judicial appointments.
Feinstein, 89, is the oldest member of the Senate and has been in office since 1992. She has been facing calls to retire for some time, but she has so far resisted those calls.
People have shared concerns about her physical and mental health. The senator was out for months with a case of shingles, and when she returned to the Senate, she had to be moved around in a wheelchair.
But Hillary Clinton is not concerned about the senator’s health. The former first lady says Feinstein’s resignation would not be “worth the tradeoff” because it would adversely affect President Joe Biden’s judicial appointments.
“Let me say a word about my friend and longtime colleague Dianne Feinstein,” Clinton said in an interview Monday at the Chicago Humanities Festival, Time reported. “First of all, she has suffered greatly from the bout of shingles and encephalitis that she endured. Here is the dilemma for her: she got reelected, the people of California voted for her again, not very long ago. That was the voters’ decision to vote for her, and she has been a remarkable and very effective leader.”
“Here’s the dilemma: the Republicans will not agree to add someone else to the Judiciary Committee if she retires,” she said. “I want you to think about how crummy that is. I don’t know in her heart about whether she really would or wouldn’t, but right now, she can’t. Because if we’re going to get judges confirmed, which is one of the most important continuing obligations that we have, then we cannot afford to have her seat vacant.”
“If Republicans were to say and do the decent thing and say, well this woman was gravely ill, she had just lost her husband to cancer … of course we will let you fill this position if she retires. But they won’t say that,” she said. “So what are we supposed to do? All these people pushing her to retire: fine, we get no more judges? I don’t think that’s a good tradeoff.”
Clinton’s comments come as Biden is facing a number of challenges in confirming judicial appointments. Republicans have been united in their opposition to Biden’s nominees, and they have used a variety of procedural tactics to block their confirmations.
If Feinstein were to retire, it would give Republicans one more vote to block Biden’s nominees. This would make it even more difficult for Biden to confirm his judicial nominees, and it could have a significant impact on the federal judiciary.
Hillary Clinton defended her friend and former colleague Senator Dianne Feinstein, saying that Feinstein’s resignation would not be “worth the tradeoff” when it comes to judicial appointments https://t.co/b6mFoPMsKu
— TIME (@TIME) May 24, 2023