Judge Nominee Confirmed Despite Religious Right Ire

Judge David Hamilton has been confirmed 59-39 by the U.S. Senate for the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, despite Religious Right demands that he be rejected.

Hamilton came under attack for an opinion he issued as a lower court judge striking down sectarian invocations in the Indiana House of Representatives. Other organizations attacked him over an abortion-related ruling.

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) led the opposition against Hamilton, charging that some of the nominee’s rulings suggest “a political agenda that is guided by personal beliefs and not the rule of law.”

Hamilton, a chief judge at the U.S. district court in Indianapolis, was Obama’s first announced appointment to the federal bench in March. After Hamilton won a 12-7 endorsement by the Judiciary Committee in June, Republicans threatened to filibuster, but the move failed.