Civil rights attorney and Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates (ERA), Noreen Farrell, put out the following statement concerning the nomination of Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court:
President Biden’s nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the Supreme Court today is historic—and long overdue.
In the Court’s 233-year history, only five justices have been women and three people of color. A Black woman has never sat on our nation’s highest court. Having presided over 500 cases, and in her role as a judge on both the District Court and most recently on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Judge Jackson has demonstrated exemplary qualifications to serve on the nation’s highest court. We hope the Senate gives Judge Jackson a speedy confirmation so we can achieve this historic milestone, but also take a long-needed step into a future where the diversity of our nation is reflected in the highest court.
In our organization’s nearly 50-year history, women attorneys with Equal Rights Advocates have argued before the Supreme Court several times on issues directly impacting women, and Black women in particular. Having a Black woman on the court, with the lived experiences unique to Black women in America, would have provided a critical perspective on those cases. Supreme Court threats to cases like Roe v. Wade confirm the danger of a federal judiciary that is two-thirds men and 80% white.
Representation matters and demographic diversity will strengthen the high court. We couldn’t agree more with President Biden that the Supreme Court “should look like the country.” At this pivotal time in our nation’s history, we hope this nomination is an indication that we are at a turning point for the advancement of gender and racial equity.
We urge the Senate to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson without delay.