END FILIBUSTER AGAINST PRISCILLA OWEN -- (House of Representatives - May 19, 2005)
(Mr. PITTS asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
Mr. PITTS. Mr. Speaker, throughout her career, Judge Priscilla Owen has received support from across the ideological spectrum. In 2000 she was overwhelmingly reelected to a second term on the Texas Supreme Court, receiving 84 percent of the vote. Every major newspaper in Texas endorsed her for election.
Her popularity stems from her excellence on the bench and in private practice where she distinguished herself as a litigator after earning the highest score in the State on the Texas bar exam in 1977.
On May 9, 2001, Priscilla Owen was nominated to the Fifth Circuit Court. The nomination is supported by three former Democrat judges on the Texas Supreme Court, a bipartisan group of 15 past presidents of the State Bar of Texas. However, on five separate occasions in the U.S. Senate, Democrats succeeded in blocking the vote on the floor, even though she has the votes to be confirmed, because of partisanship and politics.
Today political maneuverings stand and Judge Owen's courtroom stands empty. Senate Democrats are holding qualified judges hostage to their extremist views and disrupting the constitutional process. That is wrong, unprecedented, and it should stop.