The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
January 30, 2003

Press Briefing Excerpt by Ari Fleischer 01/30/03

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Q Ari, a second question having to do with Miguel Estrada. You said today he was approved by a partisan vote in the Judiciary Committee. That will go to the floor of the Senate. There, I imagine some Democrats will also try to block his approval. Is the President working on that nomination? I think it's the first one to be passed this year, if I'm not mistaken, by the Judiciary Committee.

MR. FLEISCHER: Well, according to the information I have, it has never happened in the history of the Senate for a circuit court nominee being passed out of committee to be blocked on the floor through a filibuster. So the committee has spoken. Progress is being made. The logjam in the Senate is now breaking. And the President looks at the vote on John Snow in the Finance Committee today, and the vote on Miguel Estrada in the Judiciary Committee today as signs of progress, based on the last election where the American people said, work together and get things done. And that's why the President welcomed the action today, and he hopes that both votes will move to the floor. The American people are entitled to have an Executive Branch and a Judiciary Branch filled in, not left blank and vacant.

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