July 18, 2003
Congressman Fred Upton
2161 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington D.C. 20515
As you know, the situation surrounding Michigan vacancies on the federal courts has reached an impasse. We believe the only way it can be fairly resolved is through bipartisan cooperation.
As the senior Republican member in Michigan's congressional delegation, we invite you to join us in establishing a bipartisan judicial nominating commission to recommend to the President potential nominees for Michigan vacancies on the federal courts. We believe that a bipartisan judicial nominating commission with members chosen from the Michigan Bar and the state's academic and legal communities presents an opportunity to fairly resolve the situation.
Commissions have been successful in other states. Recently, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Republican James Sensenbrenner joined Wisconsin's two Democratic Senators, Senators Russell Feingold and Herb Kohl in announcing the adoption of a Federal Nominating Commission to recommend nominees to the federal courts in their state. We have enclosed a copy of the Wisconsin Commission's Charter for your review. We believe that the bipartisan Wisconsin Commission approach could be profitably considered for Michigan and it is our hope that it could form the basis for discussions between us.
We will contact you next week to see if you are interested in pursuing this matter with us. We hope that you will join us in this effort and thank you for your consideration.
Debbie Stabenow Carl Levin