Will they be ‘respectful’?

US. Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz will have plenty of explaining to do if they follow their partisan instincts and vote against the historic nomination of Ketanji Brown Jackson to join the U.S. Supreme Court.

These two are Texas’s senators on Capitol Hill. They both opposed Judge Jackson’s previous appointment to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. They both pledge to give President Biden’s pick for the high court respect, while ensuring a vigorous vetting of her credentials to become the sixth woman and the first Black woman ever to join to the nation’s highest court.

President Biden promised to find a jurist with unassailable legal credentials. By most accounts, he hit a home run with Judge Jackson’s nomination. He also promised to select a Black woman if he got the chance to nominate someone to the court; he got that chance when Justice Stephen Breyer announced he would retire this summer at the end of the court’s term.

If senators are going to judge a nominee on her credentials, on her legal scholarship, on her temperament then Judge Jackson should sail through. That won’t be senators’ measuring stick. They’re going to look for reasons to oppose someone — if we’re truthful — simply because she was selected by a president of the opposing party.

“Ultimately, I will be looking to see whether Judge Jackson will uphold the rule of law and call balls and strikes, or if she will legislate from the bench in pursuit of a specific agenda,” Cornyn said. Well … isn’t that special? The senior U.S. senator from Texas, I presume, would have us believe that judges selected by Republican presidents have no “specific agenda.”


I guess I need to remind the senator of what Donald Trump promised when he selected Justice Amy Coney Barrett to join the court after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died in 2020. Trump promised to select someone who would overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark ruling that legalized abortion. Isn’t that finding a jurist with a specific agenda? Yes! It most certainly is such a thing!

I also should add that Donald Trump insisted on justices who would “legislate from the bench.” Are you paying attention, Sen. Cruz?

Judge Jackson is a first-rate nominee to join the Supreme Court. Sens. Cornyn and Cruz must be held to their pledges to give her a respectful confirmation hearing.