Historical judge nominated to Supreme Court


Austin Hanson, Editor

On January 27th, Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer announced his intentions to retire from the Supreme Court at the end of the 2021-22 term. On February 25th, President Biden nominated judge Kentanji Brown Jackson, a monumental and historical judge with the qualifications to prove it. 


Kentanji Brown Jackson has undergone the senate confirmation hearings required for her to become an official supreme court justice. Throughout the entire process, she has undergone an arguably rough hearing, with great opposition by GOP senators. Senators Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, Lindsey Graham, and others have led in this intense line of questioning spanning several days. Topics brought up during the hearings included the teachings of critical race theory in schools, what the definition of a woman is to Judge Jackson, the sentencing of Jackson’s certain cases in the past, and much more. 


The problem with this line of questioning is that a very small percentage of it actually pertains to Judge Jackson’s nomination as a supreme court justice. This theme of berating nominees to the supreme court has become especially prevalent in the past few decades, and all in an effort to sway just a few moderate votes on each side. Most of this berating primarily involves loaded questions on personal political beliefs, with this trend following from the confirmation hearings of Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh as well. These are all used in a way to damage the image of the nominee, entirely diverging from what should be asked. What needs to be asked are the qualifications of the judge, history of their court cases,  experiences under certain circumstances, etc.


Moving on to the qualifications of Judge Jackson, it is important to note that she is one of the most qualified judges in modern history. Starting with education, she earned her law degree from Harvard Law school and eventually became a law clerk for district courts, a court of appeals, and eventually for the supreme court. After this, Judge Jackson worked in a variety of places as an associate and assistant federal public defender. Next, she moved on to work as vice-chair/commissioner in the U.S. Sentencing Commission until 2013, when she worked as a district court judge in the District of Columbia. Finally, she was nominated for the court of appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in June 2021. This concludes the extent of her career so far, where she now stands as a Supreme Court Nominee, likely to become the first African-American woman on the Supreme Court. 


Kentanji Brown Jackson has proven to be an astounding choice for the court, with experience in nearly every field of law, and qualifications only rivaled by a few current supreme court justices. Her place in the Supreme Court will be a historical moment in our nation’s history, and her willingness to act to the best of her ability will surely make her an amazing justice well deserving of the nomination she received.