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Biden’s Supreme Court candidate insists on ‘neutral’ approach to cases

Joe Biden’s US Supreme Court nominee highlighted his “neutral” approach to judicial decision-making as the Senate Judiciary Committee closed the public vetting process for an appeals court judge, the first black woman on America’s highest court. Will be

Ketanji Brown Jackson faced 22 members of the committee for the opening statement on Monday, followed by a question-and-answer session on Tuesday. The committee will vote to advance her nomination after hearings end later this week, after which the full Senate will give its final verdict on whether she will fill the lifetime seat vacated by Stephen Breuer.

“I decide matters with a neutral posture,” Jackson told the committee during his opening remarks. “I assess the facts and, in accordance with my judicial oath, explain the facts of the case before me without fear or favor and apply the law.”

Democratic members of the committee and even some Republicans focused on the historical resonance of Jackson’s nomination. “With your presence here today, you are writing a new page in America’s history, a fine page,” said Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont.

“Today, America is witnessing a literal tilt of the arc,” said Cory Booker, a Democratic senator from New Jersey, who asked for a quote from Martin Luther King—”We will be far off because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it is justice. leans towards”.

Senator Thom Tillis, a Republican from North Carolina, also praised Jackson’s temperament, upbringing and honesty. He said the judge’s nomination was to “show others’ dreams within reach”.

Supreme Court confirmation has become an increasingly fraught political process in recent years. Barring any surprises, Jackson is expected to garner overwhelming support among Senate Democrats and possibly some support among moderate Republicans.

Republican members of the Judiciary Committee vowed to investigate Jackson’s decisions as a judge and member of the US Sentencing Commission.

“It appears that sometimes . . . fervent support has faded and in some cases, it appears that your advocacy has bled into your decision-making process as a judge,” says Texas Senator John Cornyn, a Republican, said.

Senator Marsha Blackburn, a Republican from Tennessee, made the most confrontational opening statements accusing Jackson of attempts to “protect the guilty.”

“What’s your hidden agenda?” Blackburn asked.

Dick Durbin, the Democratic senator from Illinois and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee that is presiding over Jackson’s hearing, hit back at “some last-minute attempts to derail his appointment”, including accusations from the opposition. that he had received support from the extremists. left group. He said his record debunked that claim.

Durbin defined previous allegations that Jackson was “soft on the crime” as “baseless”.

Republican lawmakers also promised to question Jackson on his “judicial philosophy”, arguing that courts should interpret the law as it was written rather than shape policy through a flexible reading of the Constitution.

Jackson told the committee that she understood “her role as a judge is limited”.

Jackson told the panel that he had met with 45 senators, including one-on-one meetings with each member of the Judiciary Committee. The American Bar Association’s Federal Judiciary Committee considered him “well qualified” to serve on the court, its highest rating.

Thomas Griffith, a retired federal appeals court judge appointed by George W. Bush, who introduced Jackson, said that although they did not always agree on the outcome of the cases, “I admired his diligent and careful approach, his deep understanding and his Respected the collegial manner, qualities for inevitable success” as a Supreme Court Justice.

Most Republican senators said they did not expect the Jackson hearing to become a farce. But even if she is likely to be confirmed, some Republican senators may use Jackson’s hearing ahead of the November midterm election to “raise grounds” or to advance their own presidential ambitions. Supreme Court and Presidency said scholars at the University of Virginia.

While Jackson may face Republican pushback, Perry said that unless something unexpected emerged, it was “probably the case that he would be confirmed”.

Despite the specific political wrangling surrounding Supreme Court appointments, some experts have argued for Jackson’s confirmation by a bipartisan Senate vote in federal appeals court in Washington DC last year – and as a member of the US Sentencing Commission before that and as a member of the US Sentencing Commission. As a federal district judge – can work in his favor.

Jackson’s confirmation would allow Biden to fulfill his presidential campaign promise to appoint the first black woman to the Supreme Court. It also represents his first, and potentially only, opportunity to put his stamp on the US Supreme Court, a move that will encourage the Democratic Party’s progressive base, as three justices appointed by Donald Trump favored conservatives. The balance was tilted 6-3. ,

Jackson’s legal career has spanned clerking for Breyer at Harvard Law School and the Supreme Court to private practice and a role as a federal public defender. A bipartisan group of senators praised his career path on Monday. If confirmed, she would be the first judge to have previously served as a public defender.

While that would not change the ideological balance of the bench, Jackson’s appointment would prevent the Liberals from losing further ground on the court.

On Sunday, the court announced that Justice Clarence Thomas — who, after Breuer, is the longest-serving current Supreme Court judge, and is often seen as the most conservative member of the court — would be treated as “flu-like”. Was admitted to the hospital with infection. and was being treated with antibiotics. He is expected to be released in a day or two.

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