The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on whether to advance Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court nomination on April 4. Chairman Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) announced the date on March 23.
The committee is made up of 11 Democrats and 11 Republicans. Jackson can advance with a tied vote under an organizing resolution passed at the start of the 117th Congress. If advanced by the committee, the full Senate will then vote on her confirmation.
In 2020, Amy Coney Barrett’s committee vote took place on Oct. 22, and her full Senate confirmation vote took place on Oct. 26. When Justice Stephen Breyer’s vacancy was announced, President Joe Biden (D) said he hoped to have a nominee confirmed within 40 days of the nomination, which would be April 9, 2022.
The average length of a Supreme Court vacancy since 1962, when measured from the retirement announcement to confirmation of a successor, is 132 days. The longest vacancy was between the terms of Antonin Scalia and Neil Gorsuch at 419 days, and the shortest was between the terms of Charles Evans Whittaker and Byron White at 13 days.
The committee vote follows four days of hearings, which took place from March 21-24. The hearings involved a statement from Jackson, interviews with witnesses testifying for and against the nomination, and questions from senators regarding the nominee’s experience, past judgments, and judicial philosophy. Topics discussed by the senators included abortion, Jackson’s approach to sentencing, LGBT issues, and the Supreme Court’s use of emergency orders, among others. To read more about the confirmation hearings, click here.
Biden announced he would nominate Jackson to replace Breyer on Feb. 25. The Senate formally received the nomination on Feb. 28. Jackson currently serves as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Biden nominated her to that post in April 2021, and the Senate confirmed her with a 53-44 Senate vote on June 14, 2021. Three Republicans, Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), voted to confirm Jackson.