Today’s historic announcement from President Biden paves the way for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to become the first Black woman to sit on the United States Supreme Court bench. Biden has made an excellent choice in Judge Jackson. We urged him to nominate a justice with a commitment to civil rights, and he listened. Not only will she make history as the first Black woman on the Supreme Court, but she will also be the first public defender to serve on the Court. She also served as Vice-Chair of the US Sentencing Commission and supported the Commission’s action to make retroactive the correction in disproportionate and racist crack cocaine sentencing, resulting in 12,000 people becoming eligible for reduced sentences. Her esteemed record as a jurist makes her extremely qualified for the Supreme Court. Congratulations to Judge Jackson on this remarkable accomplishment.
Now, as Biden’s announcement kicks off Judge Jackson’s confirmation process, he must get her confirmed for the bench. The stakes have never been higher. With recent attacks on voting rights, workers’ rights, health care access, and fairness in the legal system, we need a voice like Judge Jackson’s on the Supreme Court to prevent legislatures, corporations, and other actors from doing even more harm to Black voters, who are disproportionately impacted by these issues. Senator Joe Manchin and Senate Republicans have already set the stage for an historic fight over Judge Jackson’s confirmation, in spite of the fact that she was confirmed by the Senate three times with bipartisan support. We simply cannot afford to delay this. President Biden and Senate Democrats must use every tool at their disposal to ensure that Judge Jackson is fully and swiftly confirmed.