Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin’s Opening Statement Emphasizes The Groundbreaking Nature Of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court Nomination

Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin’s Opening Statement Emphasizes The Groundbreaking Nature Of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court Nomination

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11 min agoSenate Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin: “You, Judge Jackson, can be the first”From CNN’s Tierney Sneed

Sen. Dick Durbin, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, right, speaks as Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson listens during a Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, March 21, 2022. (J. Scott Applewhite/Pool/Getty Images)Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durbin’s opening statement emphasized the groundbreaking nature of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the Supreme Court.

Noting that the Supreme Court’s make up has “never really reflected the nation” the court served, the Democratic senator from Illinois directly addressed the fact that Jackson would be the first Black female justice if confirmed.

��Not a single justice has been a Black woman. You, Judge Jackson, can be the first,” Durbin said. “It’s not easy being the first. Often you have to be the best. In some ways, the bravest. Many are not prepared to face that kind of heat, that kind of scrutiny, that ordeal and the glare of the national spotlight,” he said. He said that with her nomination, “We can be confident that the court, its role, and its decisions will be more understandable to the American public.”

44 min ago”Every day, KBJ”: Black women rally behind Ketanji Brown Jackson ahead of SCOTUS confirmation hearingsFrom CNN’s Eva McKend and Chandelis Duster

(Sarah Silbiger for CNN)Several women-led groups held a rally in front of the Supreme Court on Monday to bolster support for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson ahead of her Senate confirmation hearings. 

The National Women’s Law Center Action Fund, She Will Rise, Black Women’s Roundtable and other organizations hosted the rally, pushing for the Senate to confirm Jackson – who would be the first Black woman on the high court. “Every day, KBJ,” “Confirm her today,” and “1, 2, 3, 4 confirm her” were among the many chants heard at the rally attended by dozens. 

Fatima Goss Graves, president and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center, told the crowd Jackson’s confirmation to the Supreme Court is “personal.” 

 “This is a moment that is historic but also filled with so much possibility for all of us,” she said. 

(Sarah Silbiger for CNN)Jackson’s nomination has inspired many who long for representation on the court in its 233-year history as Black women continue to shatter glass ceilings in the political sphere.

Sophia Fouzi, age 10 and daughter of She Will Rise founder Kimberly Tignor, told CNN, “It inspires me and a bunch of girls and women.” 

Founded in August 2020, She Will Rise advocated hard for the first Black woman to be nominated to the Supreme Court. The organization will continue to focus on urging for Black women to be in judicial pipelines throughout the US.

“When I’m older I’d like to think bigger than the Supreme Court. I would like to be the first African American female President,” Fouzi told CNN. 

(Sarah Silbiger for CNN)Black women traveled from all over the country to support Jackson’s confirmations including from as far as Vermont.

“We have so many amazing people of color and women of color who want to step into spaces and places of decision making and we are needing to be here to support and honor the work of Judge Jackson,” said former Vermont State Rep. Kiah Morris, executive director of the progressive activist group Rights & Democracy.

Counter protestors were in attendance as well, beating a drum and chanting, “Women deserve better. Abortion hurts women.”

48 min agoNOW: Historic Supreme Court confirmation hearings begin From CNN’s Alex Rogers

(Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)The Senate Judiciary Committee’s confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson have begun.

If confirmed, Jackson will be the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court.

Democrats have touted President Biden’s pick as a qualified, “historic” nominee, while Republicans have criticized her record on crime and the support she holds from left-wing groups.

Here’s what will happen at today’s hearing:

Jackson and the senators will make their opening statements establishing the arguments for and against her confirmation. Jackson will be introduced by Judge Thomas Griffith, formerly of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and Lisa Fairfax, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School. Jackson will then answer questions from the members on Tuesday and Wednesday, and witnesses will testify on Thursday. Democrats hope to confirm Jackson by early April.

More on the nominee: Jackson, 51, sits on DC’s federal appellate court and had been considered the front-runner for the vacancy since Justice Stephen Breyer announced his retirement. Jackson worked as a clerk for Breyer, a federal public defender, an attorney in private practice, a federal district court judge and a member of the US Sentencing Commission.

1 hr 7 min agoHow Ketanji Brown Jackson is preparing for questions about her record on crimeFrom CNN’s Ariane de Vogue

(Jacquelyn Martin/AP)Like most every other nominee for the Supreme Court, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has been participating behind closed doors in so-called “moot court” sessions to prepare for her upcoming hearings, according to a source familiar.

Under the system, allies play the role of hostile senators, launching questions or comments meant to rattle a nominee or throw her off course.

At these sessions — sometimes referred to as “murder boards” due to their intensity — Jackson will likely be grilled on allegations Republicans have already floated: That she is soft on crime.

Her supporters believe the Republican strategy during the hearings is two-fold: Raise questions about Jackson’s experience as a judge, public defender, her time spent on a federal commission that ultimately slashed drug sentences, and briefs she crafted supporting detainees at Guantanamo Bay. After that, they could pivot to attack the policies of the Biden administration in general.

But Jackson — who saw a preview of some similar questions the last time she went before Congress less than a year ago — will be prepared.

Already, for example, Missouri Republican Sen. Josh Hawley launched a Twitter thread on Wednesday charging that Jackson’s record reveals a “pattern” of letting child porn offenders off the hook for their appalling crimes, both as a judge and as a policymaker.

“This goes beyond ‘soft on crime,'” he charged.

In its first flash of anger concerning her nomination, the White House blasted Hawley for the attacks. A White House spokesman called the tweets “toxic and weakly-presented misinformation that relies on taking cherry-picked elements of her record out of context — and it buckles under the lightest scrutiny.”

Senate Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin said Sunday that Hawley was “wrong” and “unfair in his analysis.”

“Judge Jackson has been scrutinized more than any person I can think of. This is her fourth time before the Senate Judiciary Committee. In three previous times, she came through with flying colors and bipartisan support, the last time as soon as just last year,” the Illinois Democrat said on ABC’s “This Week.”

A CNN review of the material in question shows that Jackson has mostly followed the common judicial sentencing practices in these kinds of cases, and that Hawley took some of her comments out of context by suggesting they were opinions, rather than follow-up questions to subject-matter experts.

Read more here.

1 hr 16 min agoThe Senate will soon begin Supreme Court hearings for Biden’s nominee. Here are key things to know. From CNN’s Shawna Mizelle

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)Confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson will begin soon, with Democratic leaders setting a goal of reaching a final Senate vote by early April.

If the historic nomination process is successful, Jackson will be the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court.

Jackson, 51, currently sits on DC’s federal appellate court and had been considered the front-runner for the vacancy since Justice Stephen Breyer announced

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Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin’s opening statement emphasizes the groundbreaking nature of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court nomination

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