“You wouldn’t say you’re an activist judge?” Sen. Lindsey Graham questions Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) questions Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson on why liberal groups support her nomination.
Published: Mar. 22, 2022 at 3:26 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - Tuesday, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee had their chance to question Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson on her understanding of the Constitution. This, following opening statements Monday.

The Biden administration is emphasizing Judge Jackson’s “outstanding qualifications” and deep understanding of the law.

After Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) highlighted support from the Fraternal Order of Police, and former Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) questioned why left-leaning activist groups are also supportive of her nomination.

Graham asked, “What is your judicial philosophy?”

Jackson responded, “So I have a methodology that I use in my case in order to ensure that I am ruling impartially. And that…”

Graham interjected, “So your judicial philosophy is to rule impartially?”

Jackson said, “No, my judicial philosophy is to rule impartially and to rule consistent with the limitations on my authority as a judge. And so my methodology actually helps me to do that in every case. "

Graham then questioned, “So you wouldn’t say you’re an activist judge?”

Jackson replied, “I would not say that.”

Jackson would be the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court. A graduate of Harvard, she was a federal public defender before being named to the federal bench in 2012. She’s currently on the Appeals Court of the U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia, which is often the last stop for cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Judge Jackson is set to replace Justice Stephen Breyer who is retiring. At 51 years old, she would be one of the youngest justices on the bench. Members serve for life, or until they chose to retire.

Judge Jackson is expected to be confirmed, in part due to a rule change when Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was the majority leader. In 2017, the Senate did away with the filibuster of Supreme Court nominees, which means only 51 votes are needed to send Judge Jackson to the bench.

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