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Federal judges’ rulings can influence our rights for generations, so it’s important to understand how federal judges are chosen in the first place.

The judicial nomination process is how judges are picked and seated for lifetime appointments on the federal courts. Here’s how it works.

Federal Nominations Process

The U.S. federal court system consists of district courts, courts of appeals, and the U.S. Supreme Court. These are the steps involved in nominating judges to U.S. federal courts: 

  • The president of the United States nominates the judges to fill a court vacancy. 
  • U.S. senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee hold a public hearing to ask the nominee questions. 
  • The Senate Judiciary Committee votes on the president’s nominee. 
  • The full U.S. Senate votes on whether to confirm the president’s nominee. If the nominee receives a majority of the vote, they get confirmed.

Contact Your Senators

At each of the steps above, you can have an impact by telling your senators what you think of the nominee.

You can call the Senate Judiciary Committee, as well as directly email or call your U.S. senator.

With our sexual and reproductive health on the line, we need federal judges who are committed to protecting our fundamental rights.

If you believe, as we do, that access to sexual and reproductive health care is a human right, then let’s speak up! YOU have the power to tell the people who represent you that you care about who sits on the nation’s federal courts.

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