Jonathan Turley says Biden’s Supreme Court criteria ‘unfair’ to nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson

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Fox News contributor Jonathan Turley scolded President Biden on Tuesday for setting a “threshold criteria” surrounding his intention of choosing a Black female judge to replace Justice Breyer on the U.S. Supreme Court, calling it “unfair” to nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson.

In an appearance on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” Turley described Jackson as an immensely qualified judge who is widely respected across prominent legal circles. 

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But, he told Carlson, “It is really striking how unnecessary this was, how unprecedented it was and how unfair it was to the nominee. He could have said like past presidents have said, that he would like an African-American or a woman on the court. But he expressly said he would consider no one else except people that fit that threshold criteria.”

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson speaks after President Joe Biden announced Jackson as his nominee to the Supreme Court. Friday, Feb. 25, 2022, in Washington. 

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson speaks after President Joe Biden announced Jackson as his nominee to the Supreme Court. Friday, Feb. 25, 2022, in Washington. 
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

The irony, Turley said is that “you could not do this type of threshold exclusion if you were a school or a business, the Supreme Court has declared that unconstitutional or unlawful. 

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“The reason that it’s unfair is that Judge Jackson is a remarkably accomplished jurist. She’s been on the court for a long time, she has a stellar resume, a stellar reputation. She did not deserve this. This wasn’t of her making, and I think she would have been on the shortlist without this type of threshold criteria.”

Jackson currently sits on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, where Biden nominated her less than a year ago to take the seat of Attorney General Merrick Garland. She was the most high-profile choice among Biden’s first round of judicial nominations.

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who is a U.S. Circuit Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, poses for a portrait, Friday, Feb., 18, 2022, at the court in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who is a U.S. Circuit Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, poses for a portrait, Friday, Feb., 18, 2022, at the court in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

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Jackson comes with the kind of credentials seen in many Supreme Court nominees. She holds a degree from Harvard Law School and clerked with Breyer himself. She also clerked on the First Circuit before that and in the District of Massachusetts.

If confirmed, Jackson will be the first Black woman to sit on the Supreme Court.
 

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