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Saunders praises nomination of Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court

Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominated to be a U.S. Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia, is sworn in to testify before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, April 28, 2021 in Washington, D.C. (Photo credit: Kevin Lamarque/Getty Images)
By Pete Levine ·

Today, following President Joe Biden’s nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the United States Supreme Court, AFSCME President Lee Saunders issued a statement praising the historic selection.

“Representation matters,” said Saunders. “There have been 115 Supreme Court justices in the nation’s history, and not a single one has been an African American woman. The nation’s highest court must reflect the backgrounds and experiences of all the people whose lives will be affected by its decisions. President Joe Biden’s nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson corrects a historic injustice and makes a bold statement about the power of inclusion.”

A former federal public defender, Jackson has served on the U.S. Sentencing Commission, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia and, most recently, on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Once confirmed, she will replace Justice Stephen Breyer, who is retiring.

Saunders said Jackson’s appointment to the Supreme Court will reverse the anti-worker direction the court has taken recently.

“Working people have gotten a raw deal from the Supreme Court,” said Saunders. “The court has been part of a rigged system that has silenced our voices, rolling back our rights and freedoms while putting a thumb on the scale in favor of the super-wealthy and large corporations. At a moment when we must empower workers, making it easier to organize and stand together in strong unions, it is critical that the next Supreme Court justice interpret the law accordingly.”

Saunders added that as the daughter of two public school teachers and the niece of two uncles who served in law enforcement, Jackson has a deep commitment to public service. Moreover, Jackson has built an extensive record of protecting the rights and freedoms of working people.

“This includes,” Saunders noted, “issuing a 2018 ruling blocking an attempt by the Trump administration to decimate the collective bargaining rights of federal employees.”

“Judge Jackson is a brilliant, fair-minded jurist committed to advancing civil rights and protecting equal justice under the law,” Saunders added. “Her lived experience and professional background reflect the nation’s diversity and show a deep understanding of the challenges facing everyday working families. She is uniquely qualified to serve on the highest court in the land, and we urge the Senate to move quickly on her nomination.”

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