Biden’s pledge to put a black woman on the ‘offensive’ Supreme Court
- Ted Cruz says Biden’s promise to appoint a black woman to the Supreme Court is “offensive”.
- “He says, ‘If you’re a white man, bad luck. If you are a white woman, bad luck. You don’t qualify,’” Cruz said of Biden.
- Republicans have slammed Biden for swearing to make history by putting a black woman on the court.
Republican Senator Ted Cruz said Sunday that President Joe Biden’s promise to appoint a black woman to the Supreme Court was “offensive.”
“The fact that he’s willing to make a promise upfront that it has to be a black woman, I have to say, that’s offensive. You know, black women are what, 6% of the American population? He says to 94% of Americans, ‘I don’t give a damn about you, you’re not eligible,'” the Texas Republican said on his podcast, “Verdict with Ted Cruz.”
He continued: “It’s actually an insult to black women. If he came and said, ‘I’m going to put the best lawyer in the field and he looked at a number of people and he ended up naming a woman black, he could credibly say, “OK, I appoint the most qualified person”. He doesn’t even pretend to say that, he says, ‘If you’re a white man, you’re out of luck. If you’re a white woman, you’re out of luck. You don’t qualify.’”
Discussions about Biden’s first Supreme Court nominee kicked off last Wednesday after news broke that Associate Justice Stephen Breyer was planning to retire this summer. The White House immediately had to wonder if Biden planned to deliver on his 2020 campaign promise to appoint the first black woman in US history to the Supreme Court. White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters at a press briefing the same day that Biden would keep his promise.
The next day, Biden officially announced Breyer’s decision to step down and confirmed that he planned to keep his promise and appoint the first black woman to the nation’s highest court.
“While I studied the backgrounds and writings of the candidates, I made no decision except one: the person I appoint will be someone with extraordinary qualifications, character, experience and integrity, and that person will be the first black woman ever appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States,” Biden said Thursday. “It’s long overdue, in my opinion.”
Possible candidates to replace Breyer that have been floated include DC Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, California Supreme Court Judge Leondra Kruger and South Carolina District Judge J. Michelle. Childs, who is also a Biden nominee for DC Circuit Court.
Besides Cruz, other Republicans have criticized Biden’s decision to choose a black woman for the court, with Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi recently saying the nominee would be a “beneficiary” of the positive action.
A White House spokesperson reprimand the comments and said Biden’s decision “is in keeping with the best traditions of both parties and our nation,” underscoring President Ronald Reagan’s pledge to appoint the first woman to the Supreme Court, and more recently President Donald’s pledge Trump to appoint a woman to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Reagan kept his promise by nominating Sandra Day O’Connor to the court in 1981. Trump did so by nominating Amy Coney Barrett in 2020.
Some Republicans, however, hailed Biden’s plans. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday praised one of Biden’s supposed picks, J. Michelle Childs, and dismissed claims that it would represent affirmative action.
“Michelle Childs is incredibly skilled. There’s no affirmative action component if you choose her,” he said. “I can’t think of a better person for President Biden to consider for the Supreme Court than Michelle Childs. She has broad support in our state. She is considered an unbiased and very gifted jurist. She is the one of the most decent people I have ever met.”
Graham added, “Put me in the camp of making sure the court and other institutions look like America.”
Senate Democratic leaders have said they plan to move quickly with the confirmation process once Biden announces his nominee, which he says will happen next month. Biden’s choice would not change the court’s 6-3 conservative majority but maintain its balance.