Booker blasts Trump for zero Black nominees to circuit court judicial positions
New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker is frustrated with the lack of Black and Brown nominees to the circuit courts, calling it "unacceptable to have judicial nominees that are 90 percent white."
Presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker is calling out President Trump for failing to nominate a single Black or Latino judge to the one of the most influential court systems in the nation.
On Monday, The Washington Post reported that of Trump’s 41 judicial nominees to the circuit court, most are white men and five are Asian.
“It’s absolutely unacceptable to have judicial nominees that are 90 percent white and come from similar backgrounds. That isn’t what this country looks like and isn’t how the federal bench should either,” Booker told theGrio in an exclusive statement.
“It’s essential that our judiciary committee – the committee whose jurisdiction covers our entire federal criminal justice system – be informed by more than one experience and perspective.”
The circuit court is one of three levels of the federal court system, and the first level of appeal.
There are 13 circuit courts across the country, deciding on important issues such as birth control and abortion, the Muslim travel ban, and Trump’s proposed wall along Mexico’s border.
Trump has made it a point to nominate conservatives for positions across the federal judicial system, from Judge Brett Kavanaugh to attorney Daniel Bress, who once clerked for the controversial Justice Antonin Scalia.
The nomination of Bress to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was opposed by Sen. Kamala Harris and other Democrats, but still succeeded on Tuesday.
Both Sen. Booker and Harris know the importance of diversity in appointments. Last year, Booker became the first African-American man appointed to Senate Judiciary committee, and Harris was the second since Sen. Carol Mosely Braun was appointed in the 1990s.
Only three African-Americans have served on the Senate Judiciary Committee in 201 years of existence.
When it comes to the courts, Booker has gone on the record to ask each of Trump’s nominees to state how important diversity on the federal bench is to them.
“If we are truly to achieve ‘equal justice under the law,’ our judiciary must reflect our nation’s rich diversity,” Booker told theGrio.