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tv   Senate Judiciary Cmte. Votes on Ketanji Brown Jackson Nomination  CSPAN  April 4, 2022 10:01am-12:01pm EDT

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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> this meeting will come to order. we have seven nominees on the agenda, all of whom are eligible for a vote rooted i am going to
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focus my opening remarks on judge jackson before turning to ranking member grassley for his opening remarks. we will then proceed to consider her nomination followed by other nominees listed on the agenda. for statements on judge jackson, i plan to alternate between democrat and republican speakers. i asked members to be respectful of everyone's time and try to keep remarks in 10 minutes. senator grassley made the same request of members. the members by and large were cooperative. today, the committee will vote on the nomination of judge ketanji brown jackson to serve as associate justice of the u.s. supreme court. this is the fourth time the committee has voted on judge jackson in some capacity, a reflection of her extraordinary legal career. it is the first time the committee has had the opportunity to advance the nomination of a black woman to sit on the supreme court. this is a historic moment for
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the committee and america. during her hearing, judge jackson told us about her upbringing as the daughter of parents who attended a racially segregated schools. she marveled at how her youth on the heels of the civil-rights union differed so much for her own experience. hers is a uniquely american family story. how much hope and promise can be achieved in one generation, i am proud we can bear witness to it. in recent weeks, members of this committee have gone through judge jackson's 600 -- nearly 600 judicial opinions. her detailed responses to many bipartisan questionnaires, 12,000 pages of disclosures related to her time on the u.s. sentencing commission, 70,000 pages of materials produced by the obama library in response to a bipartisan request. last week, we held four days of hearings. judge jackson was questioned for a total of 24 hours by this committee.
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throughout the process, she has answered thousands of questions posed to her by members of this committee. in the course of this competency review, a few things are clear. she has impeccable qualifications. we do not agree on much in the senate, but not one senator on this committee has questioned she is well-qualified. she has nearly a decade of experience on the bench at both trial and a fellow levels. every level of the judiciary, including for supreme court justice breyer. she worked in private practice and it served as a member of the bipartisan sentencing commission. judge jackson would be only the second trial court judge currently serving on the supreme court, and the first public defender ever to serve on the court. these critical experiences bring a missing perspective to the court. it is truly unfortunate that some are trying to use them as reasons to vote against her. these baseless attacks for the
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broad support for her nomination across the spectrum. law enforcement, former federal prosecutors, republican appointed judges, and more have vouched for her intellect, intelligence, ability to build consensus, and evenhandedness. the american bar association came before us, they went through a laborious search of her record. i want to commend the law schools, including university of illinois, that poured through every order she has issued in her time on the bench. i want to commend judge and williams -- ann williams and seventh judge, who headed up the aba committee. i asked her and those with her from the american bar association a basic question. did you talk to? they said they reached out to over 250 individuals, judges,
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prosecutors, defense lawyers, co-counsels and adversarial situations. and asked them all to tell off the record, confidentially, what they thought of this judge. i asked about the allegations that have been made repeatedly by a few in this committee that she is soft on crime. they said there was no evidence, none, when they spoke to the group of 250 individuals. the net result, the american bar association rated judge ketanji brown jackson unanimously well-qualified to serve on the supreme court. we have seen evidence of her evenhandedness ourselves. in her time on the bench, she has ruled for and against law enforcement, for and against immigration enforcement, for republican administrations and democratic administrations. for and against labor groups. at her hearing, she detailed methodology she applies to ensure she comes to each case with an independent mind. frankly, i found her explanation far more insightful than she
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invoked contemporary labels to describe. our methodology promotes fairness, independence and restraint. it is perfected in her decision-making. in short, judge jackson assured us she is committed to equal justice under the law and ensuring the constitution works for all americans. not just the wealthy and powerful. i was also impressed with her judicial temperament. on the whole, my republican colleagues, starting with may ranking member, senator grassley, treated the nominee with dignity and respect. they promised not to turn this confirmation process into a circus, most kept that promise. some, however, did not. instead, they repeatedly interrupted and badgered judge jackson and accused her of file things in front of her parents, husband and children. there was table counting from a few of my colleagues, they repeated discredited claims
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about judge jackson's record, the impugned motives, questioned her candor. one all but called her a liar. they suggested judge jackson, a mother to two wonderful daughters, quote "endangers children." she is a better person than me, she stayed calm and collected. she should dignity, grace and poise. it is unfortunate some moments in the hearing came to that, but if there is one positive to take away from these attacks on her, they saw the temperament of a good, strong person, ready to serve on the highest court of the land. president biden assured the american public he would select a nominee who was quote "worthy of justice breyer's legacy indecency, someone well-qualified with a brilliant legal mind, with the utmost character and integrity." judge jackson characterized justice breyer's legacy is one of "the highest level."
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that is what we saw in this room last week. rather than simply another justice breyer, she will be the one and only justice kentucky brown jackson. she will bring -- ketanji brown jackson. she will bring the highest level of civility and grace. throughout history, the senate judiciary committee has been the venue for some of our nation's most significant issues, debates and nominees. i often thought if you had to choose one place to stand and witness the march of america, the noble of our democracy, i would seek out a chair in this room. today's vote is such a moment. this committee's action today is nothing less than making history. i am honored to be part of it. i will strongly and proudly support judge jackson's nomination, i now turn to ranking member grassley for his opening remarks. >> we have six judicial nominees, one executive nominee.
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i will be supporting jennifer raritan. she has spent her career litigating at some of the best law firms in the country. she is familiar with the types of cases in the southern district of new york. finally, take a few minutes to discuss judge jackson's nomination. judge jackson, of course, was very personable and engaging. i enjoyed the opportunity to meet her family before the hearing started. we obviously are, they obviously are and should be proud of her achievements. having carefully studied her record, unfortunately, i think she and i have fundamental different views on the role of judges and the role they should play on our system of government. because of those disagreements, i cannot support her nomination. over the last several weeks, i
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have talked about how the white house and democrats have shielded important parts of judge jackson's record, the obama white house held back more than 48,000 pages. judge jackson also gave the white house confidential nonpublic probation recommendations for some of her cases. but last week, we asked for other documents having to do with probation filing in the hawkins case. judge jackson told us she cannot get records for her old cases, because she is no longer a district court judge. that seems to be very convenient. however, it is a big inconvenience for this senator. the refusal tells us those
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documents probably would not help the nominee because we have seen the willingness to leak any helpful information. so senators have to make a decision on her nomination based on the information we have. as i said, when this all started , we would thoroughly examine her record and judicial philosophy. we have done both. in the last few weeks, we have heard the remarkable arguments from democrats that we should not consider a nominees judicial philosophy in voting. democrats have themselves to blame. after vicious, misleading attacks on other conservatives, republicans used the same tactics against nominees of clinton, ginsburg and burke and breyer.
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then, you know the history. senator schumer decided to bring back a tax on judicial nominees based on judicial philosophy, and ideology. in june 2001, senator schumer appointed to brooks nomination and argued it would be good to return to "a more open debate about ideology when we consider nominees." he clearly thought the nomination was a good model. over the next few years, senator schumer put the strategy to practice. in 2003, he even said he was proud of his role in blocking nominees based on ideology. so a question, senator schumer, 18 years later, are you still proud that you poisoned the
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water on judicial nominees? he and other democrats think it is unfair that we looked at judge jackson's record and ask her about it. that does not hold up to even the slightest scrutiny. senator schumer and democrats decided to destroy the model of difference if the nominee was qualified, excluding considerations of their philosophy. in other words, ginsburg and breyer are models for that. they do not think that is a good model. that is why judicial philosophy has focused on judicial nominations. at one point, and written question, senator cruz posed this question. please explain, in your own words, the theory prevalent among members of founding father
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generation that humans possess natural rights that are inherent or inalienable? she seemed to have an understanding of this when she answered by saying the theory that humans possess inherent or inalienable rights is reflected in the declaration of independence, which states "we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, among them life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." the next question, do you hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights, yes or no? it seemed to me her understanding she should easily have said yes to that. but she took a position, she did not have a position.
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part of having judicial philosophy is having an understanding of the fundamental principles in our constitution. natural rights are part of that system. but as judge jackson said in a written response, she does not quote "hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights." i take issue with this as natural rights are basic to the constitutional system, and principles -- under the constitution, we are endowed by our creator. i do not have to repeat that. all other rights are reserved to the people under the 10th amendment, recognizing the principle limit of government is what makes america the exceptional government compared to all others, and sets our constitution apart from all others. when interpreting the laws of the constitution, understanding the principle of limited government are essential, otherwise there would be no
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checks on the federal government. does she have an understanding of the meaning of the ninth amendment and the 10th amendment? in the hearings and meetings with senators, she explained she does not have a judicial philosophy and instead looked at her methodology. she said to look at her cases to see that methodology worked. i did and found the results of that methodology alarming. when judge jackson applied it to the -- at the hearing, judge jackson testified about compassionate release provisions. senator cotton walk-through pacific cases -- specific cases, where judge jackson misused a motion for compassionate release to re-sentence and do it to a dangerous drug kingpin. as the lead author, i know a thing or two about compassionate release. it is meant to allow elderly
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inmates and those suffering from terminal illness to petition the court for a sentence reduction. the statute also allows for reduction if the court finds an extraordinary or compelling reason. this is supposed to mean it is a rare instance and use it with great discretion, particularly as weighed against the charge danger to society and the risk of recidivism. at her hearing, judge jackson said she based her extraordinary and compelling finding on the non-retroactive change in the law. this is a terrible and dangerous misinterpretation. congress shows which provisions of the first act would apply retroactively, since i am involved with that legislation, i ought to know. the senate is considering
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legislation i cosponsored with chairman durbin, that makes some of the first act retroactive. but congress must make that change, because the first act did not provide for retroactive application in all instances. for instance, retroactivity is not mentioned once in the compassionate release statute. the relevant sensing -- sentencing guidelines do not mention retroactivity as an extra ordinary and compelling reason, either. so judge jackson's consideration of applying to retroactivity to the first act, when it is not explicitly provided, is extremely concerning. it is a radical position and the south side of the confines of law. such jackson's interpretation was so extreme, she got senator condon to defend the first act. i do not think that is what the white house had in mind when
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they said she was a consensus builder. the other troubling part about this case is that judge jackson gave a different explanation for her reasoning in the sentencing hearing then she did before the committee. she found mr. young's health and covid were extraordinary and compelling reasons that earned the reduction in the sentence. but the reasons have to justify the reduction. reducing his sentence based on current health conditions and a pandemic, but leaving him in prison for another seven years makes no sense. here, admit judge jackson got to sentence a defendant to the sentence she wanted to do all along. the compromise i brokered with senator durbin on the first step act and many others would not have been possible if we thought the actor as a judge would
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insert their own views into the law. decisions like this represent serious separation of power concerns and will make bipartisan work harder in the future. young is just one example of judge jackson's lenient approach to criminal law and sentencing. she has declined to apply a number of sentencing enhancements congress put into the sentencing guidelines. i work to reform sentencing for nonviolent offenders, but judge jackson's approach applies across most areas of criminal law. she is consistently applying them in sentences for dangerous crimes -- minimum sentences for dangerous crimes. other cases a show she applies her methodology to reach and resolve that goes against the plain meaning of the statute. the case involves a question over and meaning of statutory
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provisions to commend a decision about when illegal immigrants are subject to expedited removal to homeland security soil and reviewable discretion. but judge jackson concluded she could still review the agency's decision, because this language did not mean the decision was "committed to agency discretion by law." by reaching that strange conclusion, she gave herself the power to oversee homeland security's decision about expedited removal and the d.c. circuit judge this ridiculous ruling. -- circuit reversed this ridiculous ruling. there has been bipartisan frustration with how little nominees say. but judge jackson was not ready to answer a number of questions
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other nominees were willing to answer. one senator asked judge jackson about the judicial philosophy for three sitting justices. she said she was not familiar or had a hard time -- did not have time to read this -- research the issue. this is a question asked in almost every interview for interns around the country. we do not expect a nominee to say they will agree with a specific justice 100% of the time. but it is not asking too much that a nominee be able to explain the justices approach to the law and where they may differ. judge jackson also said she did not watch and was not familiar with the cavanaugh confirmation. that is surprising for a sitting federal judge, who worked in the same courthouse as then judge kavanaugh. as a member of the committee, it
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is hard to satisfy everyone. i have had calls to my office complaining about senator durbin saying good things about me, they argue i did not say enough about democrats treatment of cavanaugh and barrett. then, i have democrats who are saying i was too mean to the nominee. throughout this process, i have focused on thoroughly and fairly assessing judge jackson's record. i think i have done that. we need confidence that judges will interpret the law as they are written. judge jackson's reinterpretation law, helps to write, does not give me that confidence. >> thank you, senator grassley. >> thank you, chair durbin. i will also say nice things about you, senator grassley. you run a committee to this
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difficult time very well. before i begin, i constantly hear the name of former judge bork coming up. as one of those who is here for those hearings, i do remember what was described as a confirmation conversion as he changed his position dramatically during the hearings. when it came to a vote, he did not pass the committee. as we all know, the white house was quietly trying to get him to withdraw his name. but the democratic-controlled senate said if you want to devote, we have a vote on the senate floor -- a vote, have a vote on the senate floor. he did have a vote on the senate floor, a couple democrats voted for him. there were 70 republicans who voted against him, he lost.
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-- so many republicans voted against him, he lost. had they voted for him, he would have one. their publicans felt the same way, the name should have been withdrawn. it makes a nice logan, but i think it would -- slogan, i think it would be wise if we used history. we are going to take one of our most consequential duties to consider a vote whether to advance a nominee to the night state supreme court. the nominee, judge ketanji brown jackson, embodies the highest ideals of the judiciary and legal profession. during the confirmation proceedings, she put on a master class about what it means to be an independent, fair-minded justice. her grace, intellect, temperament, wit are exactly what americans want and deserve. on the nation's highest court. i will probably and confidently vote i to advance her historic
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nomination to the u.s. senate. this is my 21st supreme court confirmation process. i voted to confirm supreme court nominees nominated by republicans and democratic presidents alike. i think i have voted for more republican nominated nominees then many of my republican colleagues. i voted against party lines, even when it is not popular to do so. i have always approached the considerations in the same matter. with an open and objective mind, giving weight to qualifications, temperament and record of individuals nominated. of the individual that has been nominated. i've always believed and still do that the independent judiciary should be above partisan politics. when i say judge jackson is one of the most objectively
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well-qualified supreme court nominees i've ever considered, it is rooted in decades of experience in evaluating these nominees. i know that is going to fall on deaf ears to some members of this committee. members who unfortunately care more about seeing their soundbites in social media appeals then seriously and respectfully pushing nominees. members that have badgered judge jackson have even refused to respect basic rules and the quorum of the committee and senate. the fact that judge jackson maintained a calm demeanor and confidence in the face of such disrespectful behavior underscores her remarkable temperament. that is an attribute we need on our nation's highest court. i hope there are other senators, those who i give great credit for asking serious questions in treating the nominee with
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respect will see this historic moment for what it is. a chance to unite across party lines, around one of the most brilliant legal minds in our country just as we did three times before. a chance to celebrate the first ever black women to the supreme court widening the lens of our supreme court representation. ensuring that democracies institutions become ever more inclusive and representative with each generation. also, a chance to show americans that the independence and integrity of our judicial system is something we need and value more than our party affiliations. what a reaffirming signal to send the american people if we break free from the politics of the moment and unite behind judge jackson. what a refreshing departure for
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the idea in virtually every part of our political system. judge jackson has given me every reason to be hopeful. not only for our court, before our country. judge jackson, justin being nominated, has already helped move our country forward. millions of people across the country tuned into our hearings. they saw themselves as part of our democratic process like they never had before. that is something we should all be proud of. something we should always strive for in our system of self-government. i am a former chair of this committee. i'm president pro tem and dean of the senate. i continue to hope it will be an aspirational committee, that the
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senate can still serve as the conscience of the nation like we often have before in key moments. so let's put partisanship and pettiness aside. vote to advance this extraordinary nominee to the senate floor. ultimately confirming her to the supreme court. and realize we are in the midst of a historic moment. the history books will be taking notes. they will read this history for generations to come. the only question we have, is whether we will rise to meet this moment in history. i intend to. thank you. chair durbin: senator graham? sen. graham: what would be odd is for us to know all the against the supreme court nominee.
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about this hearing, judge jackson has got a lot to be proud of. she has accomplished a lot in her life. she is a good person i'm sure a great mother and very gifted. she has fought hard to be where she is at in life. i will vote no. first time i have ever voted against any supreme court nominee. let me tell you how i got there. the supreme court is different than the circuit court. i voted for her at the d.c. circuit court level because i'm disposed to do that. i am playing a game of very few people play anymore that if you win an election, i expect you to pick somebody i would not support on the court. i do not think twice about not voting for her. now that we are talking about the supreme court, you are making policy, not just bound by it. a lot of my friends on the other side have done this, voted for a person at the district or circuit court level only to vote
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now at the supreme court level. this nomination had a political moment. president biden can choose anybody he wants. that comes with winning. he had a lot of qualified african-american women to choose from. to me, saying upfront during the election, i'm going to pick a qualified african-american woman is fine. our folks have done that. did not bother me that much. it was trying to make the court look more like americans. he has a political decision he made and i respected that. all of us are in politics over here. i'm inclined to vote for judges of the other side but this choice of judge jackson was really embraced by the most radical people in the democratic movement. to the exclusion of everybody else. after four days of hearings, i now know why the left likes her so much. it became obvious to me why she
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was there first and apparently only choice. there are people that president biden could have picked that would have been in the liberal camp in terms of voting on the supreme court and they could have gotten 60 to 65 votes. the wideouts did not go down that road because they feel as though they must pick somebody that is more appealing to the hard left. they made that choice and we will see how it plays out. why i voting now? -- why am i voting no? on our side, we liked judges to be down by the written level of the law. the immigration case that got to be sort of famous, make the road new york was a decision by president trump and his team to fully utilize expedited removal procedures within the statutory authority granted by congress. you could not have written this thing more clear that it is in
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the soul and unrevealed discretion of the secretary to use expedited deportation involving people who have been here two years or less. judge jackson ruled for the supportive plaintiff. she was overruled by the d.c. circuit court of appeals. not exactly conservatism. they could hardly be a more definitive expression of content to lead the scope of expedited removal within start -- statutory bounds. the forceful phrase so and unreviewable discretion by a -- unexceptional term to give judgment solely to the agencies discretion. she took the plane meeting and set it aside and illegal gymnastics to basically issue a temporary injunction.
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that to me says everything i need to know about how she is going to govern. she wants the outcome, she is going to fight it. she is going to get it. activist to the core. the child pornography cases. did not know much about it until we sort of had the hearing. the way i question her, i found if i had left it up to her, i would have gotten one answer in 30 minutes. i don't know how you question witnesses. i interrupt when i think they are being evasive. i let them talk when i think they're answering the question. this hearing is coming to an end. if you compare this to cavanaugh, you missed a lot. i've never complained about cavanaugh or anybody else being asked a hard question. i have complained about their lives being destroyed by a coordinated effort of democrats and mainstream media trying to destroy somebody to keep the seat open. that did not happen here. i found her completely evasive but when you did dig into it
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after a lot of digging, you found out -- i found out something that was astonishing. in the area of child pornography cases, it is not so much that she is out of sync with the average senate, which she is, and senator cruz, you did a great job proving that. senator hawley, you proved into how you sent it somebody, but what i found is that she routinely sets aside enhancement factors when it comes to increasing senate. she will not as a general policy disagreement with respect to these two enhancements that his computers and the number of images. she does not hold that against the defendant, the perpetrator. i could not disagree more. if you are a judge out there coming before this committee and you want to get promoted, you have this philosophy, you're going to run into a problem with me. there are 85 images of children being exploited on the internet. the image was written to deal
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with males. along comes the internet, as she said, now, it is so easy in the confines of your office or home to hit a button and download hundreds of not thousands of images and she felt like that would be unfair to the defendants. every time you hit a button, downloading an image of a child being sexually abused, i want you to go to jail longer. the more you download, the more you go to jail. if you don't do that, we are never going to get this right. she does not hold it against the defendant to go to the venue of choice. i want to deter people from going to the internet and downloading a bunch of child poor by putting them in jail longer, not less. the fact that she took those two sentence enhancements off the table because she thought it would be unfair to the defendant because it is so easy, to me,
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she has lost me completely. i'm not suggesting she likes what is happening in child pornography. i'm sure she has seen a lot of things that offend her, but she is a judge. she has a chance to deter the crime and impose us senate that would deter and she chose not to. i think that is a terribly bad choice and if anything comes out of this hearing constructively, we will pass a law changing that. every judge has to hold it against a child pornography. the more you download, the longer you go to jail should be the rule. we should insist that using the internet is a bad thing in child pornography, not a neutral thing. i would like to wear with my colleagues on both sides to do that. about her being the first african-american nominee to the supreme court, that is true. the only reason that is true is because my democratic colleagues back into thousand five
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filibustered for two years, 2003 to 2005, janice rogers brown, a supreme court justice from the state of california that was pitched -- picked by president bush. one level below the supreme court. when it got to be possible for her to be on the supreme court as a possibility, then senator biden said she would be filibustered. senator durbin, senator schumer all filibustered her and told this body that if you picked her, she is likely to be filibustered. that is why judge jackson is the first african-american nominee to come before this body to be on the supreme court because she made it that way. when you had a chance to support an african-american conservative, you used her
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ideology against her. blocked her from being considered by this committee. and we are supposed to be like trained seals over here clapping when you appoint a liberal. that is not going to work. we live in america today where your ideology is held against you if you are a conservative. and when you are a liberal, we are supposed to embrace everything about you and not ask hard questions. that is not the world we are going to live in. if we get back the senate and we are in charge of this body and there is judicial openings, we will talk to our colleagues on the others, but if we are in charge, she would not have been before this committee. you would have had somebody more moderate than this. i want you to know right now, the process you started to go to a simple majority vote is going to rear its head here pretty soon where we are in charge and then we will talk about judges differently. chair durbin: thank you. senator feinstein? sen. feinstein:.
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i am very pleased that the committee is moving forward with our consideration of judge ketanji brown jackson. i want to tell you why. i find that she is an exceptional nominee with impeccable credentials. she has broad and relevant experience and a clear record of well reasoned legal decisions from her nine years on the federal bench. where do i get this? she has been before us three times already receiving bipartisan to serve first on the sentencing commission in 2010 as a federal district court judge in 2013 and as a federal appellate court judge in 2021. she has been tested. based on her record and the testimony, i believe she is again deserving of full support.
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she is precisely the type of nominee that senators on both sides of this i'll -- aisle should want on the supreme court. she applies a clear and fair method in deciding her cases, has demonstrated a remarkable judicial temperament. she faithfully applies the law in each case. and her eight years as a federal district court judge, she had the very low reversal rate of only 2%. which is well below the national average. it is especially impressive because she served on the d.c. district court which hears very challenging issues, many of which end up at the supreme court. during the hearings, we heard testimony from retired judge thomas griffith. who was appointed to the d.c. circuit judge president george w. bush.
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judge griffith told us that judge jackson "will adjudicate based on the facts and the law and not as a partisan." he testified he had "always respected her careful approach, extraordinary judicial understanding, and collegial manner." we heard similar comments from representatives of the american bar association. judges, attorneys who have worked with her over the course of her career. they testified that judge jackson is universally and highly regarded for her intellect, her integrity, her judgment and her writing and analytical skills. both prosecutors and defense attorneys have praised judge jackson "as thorough, hard-working, and extremely well
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prepared." judge jackson is widely respected and it is clear to me that her colleagues on the bench and the lawyers who argued before her have no doubt that she would make a fine addition to the supreme court. i have no doubt either. it is clear to me that judge jackson believes it is the role of a judge to serve as an impartial decision-maker. and as a judge, she considers the facts and the law for each particular case that comes before her to arrive in an outcome that is fair and under the law. i'm very proud to support her nomination. thanks, mr. chairman. chair durbin: senator cornyn? sen. cornyn: justice robert jackson famously said the supreme court is not final because it is infallible. it is infallible only because it
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is final. i trust that would not be the case if the american people saw the supreme court as just another political branch. in simple terms, it means the supreme court is the last word in interpreting and applying our laws through the 70 to 80 cases it decides to hear each year. mainly because it is seen as an umpire, not as a player. while i view the judicial branch as the crown jewel of our constitutional republic, it has over the years gotten out of its lane on more than one occasion by acting like another political branch. over the years, the supreme court has developed various legal doctrines like substantive due process to create new rights out of whole cloth. rights that are neither in the
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text nor what the framers ever envisioned that these rights existed or would be created by nine unelected judges at the time of the founding. by investing federal power in article one, federal legislative power in article one and then reserving to the states to determine their own affairs, our founders believed that policy decisions must reside ultimately in the people. as senators, we work on our constituents behalf's in washington. every six years, they let us know whether we are doing a good job or not. when the supreme court blatantly engages in policymaking, it takes away the power of the people to decide for themselves and to hold their government accountable. agree or disagree with the results of a given supreme court decision. over our nation's history, there has been something for everyone to love or hate from plessy
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versus ferguson, which established the shameful separate brett -- but equal document for public schools, ultimately overruled in round versus education, to -- which mandated same-sex marriages. when the supreme court creates a right not even mentioned in the constitution, the independence and legitimacy of the supreme court itself is called into question because consent is discarded. legitimacy of our government institutions is something we have always debated in america. we have even fought a war over it. the declaration of independence itself affirms that government derives is just powers from the consent of the governed. that very principle is undermined when bridges -- judges rewrite the constitution to their liking. where is the legitimizing consent?
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president lincoln stated it another way. he said no man is good enough to govern another man without that man's consent. how are these so-called unenumerated rights invisible to the naked eye, how are those rights any different? that is what can happen when unelected judges invalidate state laws and impose a one-size-fits-all policy regime on our entire country. again, like or dislike the results in an individual case, but we should all be concerned about the legitimacy of our governing institutions when they so readily discard consent of the government. i view the confirmation proceedings as a way to get back and reflect on first principles on the role of our judiciary and constitutional system. president biden has made no bones about his intention to nominate a supreme court justice
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who has an expansive view of unenumerated invisible rights. judge jackson, she would not answer our questions on this topic. i did not ask her to prejudge a case or commit to a particular outcome in a disputed area of law, but i did ask her about her judicial philosophy. she says she does not have one and has not thought much about it. that is simply not a credible response and i believe demonstrates a lack of candor. maybe she was over coached. but i left the confirmation hearings concerned about her to unwritten rights. judge jackson has a marvelous legal education. she is a charming person. she has a vast practical experience, something i think is a real plus having served as a public defender in circuit court judge.
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someone of her impressive caliber surely has a judicial philosophy. but maybe she just did not want to talk about it. time after time, when we asked about her judicial philosophy, she pivoted to something she called methodology. let me be clear, methodology is not a judicial philosophy. i'm glad when she tells us that she proceeds from a place of neutrality but that tells us nothing as to whether she believes the constitution has a fixed meaning. the order in which she decides to read the parties briefs tells us nothing. as to whether and what extent a judge, now quoting justice breyer will look to consequences including contemporary conditions, social, industrial and political of the community affected when deciding cases. the main types of contrasting
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judicial philosophies include judicial activism versus judicial restraint, lose construction versus strict construction and a living document approach versus original intent. justice barrett, for example, called herself an originalist and textual list, an approach championed by her mentor, justice scalia. that would place her in the restraint. in other words, she might be skeptical of invisible or unenumerated rights. for us to fulfill our constitutional duties, we need answers to our questions about how a judge views judge made law. my concerns were further elevated as i review judge jackson's record and i saw examples of activism bleeding over in her decisions. one of the opinions from her time on the d.c. court demonstrates the serious concerns i have about her ability to follow the clear letter of the law as opposed to
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her personal preferences. others have mentioned and i will as well, the case of make the road new york versus maclaine and whether the american civil liberties union and others challenge the regulation requirement for expedited removal of those who illegally enter our country. the immigration nationality act gives the department of homeland security "so an unreviewable discretion to apply expedited removal proceedings." that does not leave any gray area for interpretation. so an unreviewable discretion is about as clear as it comes. judge jackson, who presided over this case, decidedly did not stay in her lane as she says it she attempts to do. she went beyond is unambiguous text to deliver a political wind to a progressive group, and in
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the process, entered an injunction barring the use of this on tool needed by our border patrol and immigration authorities to deter people from violating our immigration laws. unsurprisingly, as we have heard, her decision was overruled by the d.c. circuit court. i believe this is a clear-cut example, about as clear as you can get of judge jackson ignoring the written law in order to achieve a result that she preferred. they've only been 115 supreme court justices in our nations history. that is why it is crucial that we use these proceedings to understand if a judge will truly stay in their lane. or whether they will attempt to legislate from the bench and deliver what justice biden and his democratic colleagues are not able to achieve through the legislative process. a judge must call balls and strikes. given what i have seen in her unwillingness to this growth -- is close her judicial philosophy and is about an expansionist
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view of unenumerated rights, i have concerns that judge jackson will be pinchhitting for one team or the other. i will vote no. chair durbin: thank you. senator whitehouse? sen. whitehouse: what plays out here in this room with supreme court nominations is often driven and directed in other places. the real action is too often offstage and an archipelago of right-wing, dark money front groups out to capture the court. that is where the real story lies. when republicans appoint to the supreme court the selections come out of the archipelago of front groups paid for by big, anonymous donors. what we call dark money. when democrats appoint to the supreme court, their objections
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come out of that same archipelago of front groups paid for by big, anonymous donors, the dark money groups. we have heard a lot about judicial philosophy during the course of this. if you bring a judicial philosophy to these proceedings, i think we do need to examine it because the judicial philosophy is so often a masl for predisposition -- mask for predispositions. originalism works very well for you if you would like to look back before industry regulation at a time when there was no industry big enough to regulate and serve the interests of corporate deregulation. originalism works very well for you if you want to return to old social norms that society has moved beyond.
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let's not pretend that a judicial philosophy is a neutral thing. it is a tool. when they judge says he or she has one, it is worth looking into, but that does not mean you have to have one. there twins to another group, which is called independent woman's voice. their funders are 85 fund and congress fund. 501(c) four of the heart court capture scheme. they are also funded by the bradley foundation. it is what i talked about before in these proceedings. for years the president of one of these groups is actually a lobbyist. an overlap for a while for americans for prosperity.
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this huge dark money political authorization. then on pemberton before, before they even knew who the nominee was going to be, sent a memo to gop senate members. the date was february to may 4, 2022. here's the punchline. the focus not on the selection process are the qualifications, but rather on the need to learn more about the nominees judicial philosophy. the memo from those two front groups be put in the records. the other thing we hear a lot about as what is going to be dangerous for children. once again, we turn to a dark money from her as a source for that concern. on the day of members in effect, a group called the american accountability foundation came
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out with an investigative report . now, let's look at the american accountability foundation. it shares an address and senior staff with a group called the conservative partnership institute. which employees among other people -- mitchell as a senior. it is the so-called care of name, the american accountability foundation. i also share an address with something called the america first legal. american accountability foundation is funded by donors trust, which is described as the coke brothers right wing atm and the bradley foundation, which i spoken about before in the sharing of the context. it was founded by the opposition research director, none other
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than for president. they got right to work the day she was announced. founder tom jones says after calling her a radical leftist, the very first day she was announced, americans want our judicial system to protect citizens and children from sexual predators. dark money released -- put into. the continuing problem of these outside groups that are funded by huge interest, the height that was behind him and the exert control when republicans were charged in this election of the nominees and when democrats were in objections to the nominees, it is something that i think needs to be brought to the surface. so, i wanted to make that point with those two arguments.
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i would also like to point out because i have been a prosecutor and seen some of this stuff, and spoken to a rhode island judge and federal judges about this. i pulled up the two guidelines. they are the crack powder disparity and the pornography guidelines. that is lightly a subject throughout the judiciary, which we heard from any other members of the judiciary. that would help explain why it is so many of these cases. the government actually recommends below the sentencing guidelines. the government, which usually is making the harshest sentencing recommendations is actually making below the sentencing guidelines. it is hard to fault the judge for a sentence below the sentencing guidelines, when the harshest participant in the
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courtroom, the government is recommending below the sentencing guidelines. while the musty been there no -- while that most of us know who has been there knows that every --. the second is the defense. our system of justice, the judge is pretty much honored bound to give favorable consideration to the recommendation of the defendant. you cannot rely the defendants recommendation. they are entitled to a honest consideration of their views. then there is the probation office, which serves the court and makes is own recommendation based on an exhaustive personal review of the defendant, family, victims, of the circumstances. it comes up with a sentencing recommendation. when you look at all three of those data points the judge has to face. when you look at the widespread
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acceptance of the fact that this sentencing guideline is widely thought across the judiciary to have a hearing problem with it, you actually look where the sentencing falls in that actual mixtures that matrix, there's nothing to see here. this is all a part of what was cooked up by a performer up to . this dark money funded american accountability foundation. with that, i think it is unfortunate which he had to go through. i think it is unfortunate whoever who is behind this process would stand up and show who they are, admit it. show who wrote the check to the judicial crisis network for $14 million -- $70 million. that is a pretty big check to write.
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who wrote that check to get the ads on the air for kavanaugh? who wrote the check to get the ads on the air? who wrote the check to get the ads on the air and one business that they have before a court? two cost them to write checks that big. that is a mystery we need to solve. it is a lot of criticism on dark money on both sides of the panel during the course of this discussion. everyone has a nice chance to prove it in the months ahead one we run away at for a vote and a opportunity to get rid of this poisonous stuffer once and for all. >> thanks, senator whitehouse. senator lee. >> i appreciate the willingness of judge jackson to come before our committee and answer questions. i have enjoyed getting to know her. she seems like a wonderful human being. one who is dedicated to her
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family. she comes up some impressive qualifications academically and professionally. she is someone who was in all levels of the judiciary and will serve as three levels of the judiciary. it is important to understand what kind of supreme court justice she would be. sen. lee: that is why it can't be something that focuses on sort nature of the mash historic nature of the nomination. on that point, the historic nation of the nomination, earlier today there was a political tweet. politico send out a tweet reading judge jackson will likely be confirmed by the end of this week, here is what we expect. if that were true, that would come as news to the family of
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thurgood marshall. it would come as great news. to justice clarence thomas and his family. when we hear, as we heard today calls for making sure that we respect and need to show inclusiveness, we must remember how members of this committee have treated others. remember how they treated justice clarence thomas. let's remember how they are still treating him. how people on the left are attacking him. one of the most decent human beings that i have ever known. one of the most decent human beings and brilliant jurist to ever serve on the supreme court of the united states or any court for that matter. let's remember how members of this committee and people on the left treated janice brown and
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miguel estrada. if you're going to make it about inclusiveness, let's remember to be inclusive in our discussion of inclusiveness. it is also important to talk about judicial loss of these. there's a reason we talk about that. we talk about not because it is jargon or some sort of comfort. we talk about it because we must talk about it. that is how we make sure that our government functions as it should. when you have someone serving on any federal court, but especially the supreme court of the united states, if they do not have a proper understanding limited role of the federal judiciary for the separation of powers which are the three branches, judicial branch can become dangerous. which the will of the people can be ported by justices who are not willing to recognize limits
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on their own power, limits on their own jurisdiction. judges and justices who can recognize what they are empowered to do and their role is not a policymaking one, but an interpretive one. that is why we ask so many questions about judicial loss if h. l philosophy. for a judge that wants to achieve a particular outcome . or a judge that looks at a case from a standpoint of figuring out what results he or she will be comfortable with. that becomes the traditional philosophy. the achievement of a fair result, a result that the judge or justice feels comfortable with is the guiding principle. judicial philosophy matters also
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because there's a lot of consequences to having a bad judicial philosophy. when we asked about judge jackson's judicial philosophy, when we asked her, we asked others, we were told frequently that we should look at her record. so we looked at her record. we got a lot of things in her record that we found concerning. including a couple of cases in which she acted without jurisdiction. to make -- the make the wrote new york case, a troubling example of this. in both circumstances, she took an executive action taken within the trump administration, an action she apparently disagreed with and issued the relief to invalidate those actions.
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in both cases she was overturned by the left-leaning u.s. court of appeals for the d.c. circuit judge. these cases have not gotten this much attention as some of her other rulings, some of first sentencing decisions, but they are very significant. they are troubling to me. when someone is willing to act on they lacked jurisdiction, and or they do have a valid cause of action upon which the grant that released, that is someone who is cutting into hearts of the limit up judicial authority and creating a dangerous circumstance. we are told to look in her record. yet, much of what we see in her record is disturbing. we are told to look at her record and yet still do not have significant portions of her record on another line of disturbing ruling. those dealing with pornography
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cases. she made the argument that many of of this committee have made the argument for her as well, that all judges sentence this far out in the guidelines, as far out in the guidelines as you get in those cases. she was somehow in the mainstream of judges with sentencing cases like these, based on what she is seeing, she sentences 47% below the national average. just three days ago, a week after the hearings were concluded, we received the transcripts from a case where judge jackson gave yet another life sentence to a violent child rapist who failed to give truthful information to the court, falsified his address for purposes of requiring his sex offender registry participation. in this instance, the defendant, sexually assaulted another female family member shortly
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after being released. he then bribed the victim into refusing to testify against him. he would have been in prison and unable to assault his sister in law if jackson when i have -- would have sentenced him. we can understand that if only we have the record before us. for whatever reason, the white house and the democrats on this committee aren't all that concerned about making sure we have that record. in fact, they seem determined to do the opposite of that. judge jackson claims that she does not have access to that record. even though it appears that she and her chambers got key pieces
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of that information that could have been drawn which were requested and sensitive information among those reports. something does not add up here. when we ask about her judicial philosophy we are told to look at her record. yet, when we look at her record what is there is troubling to us and very often there's a whole lot that simply is not fair. i'm also concerned about her inability or willingness to answer certain basic questions. whether it is in response to the judge, whether it is in response to senator blackburn, simple question, what is a woman? her refusal to respond to my question regarding her views on efforts to pack the supreme court of the united states. these are troubling, troubling
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and adequate answers she provides because she does not answer them at all. these are very basic questions. questions that she could easily answer, should easily answer, the fact that she does not or will not, has and is concerning. finally, i am concerned by her response to senator kennedy echoing formal justice that five supreme justices could find our constitutional rights. anytime the supreme court has five of those that they have a majority for whatever opinions they determine". . " that is troubling. if record does not support what they say it supports. even more troublingly the stuff that they say is supportive of her record, stuff we have not
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been given. why this is not a vacancy that may receive on the supreme court ? why not give us access to the documents that she insists. sentencing enhancements for child pornography, not just child pornography, this is commercialized, these are commercialized efforts to profit off of child torture, enhancements for computer transmission and receipt for a number of images, pure pubescent . those enhancements simply because she simply disagrees with the key policy elements
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underlying them. this is troubling and we do not even have the reports and other documents we need to review them. i will vote no. chair. durbin: thank you. sen. klobuchar: i want to start off by thanking you and senator grassley for your leadership. when you mention going home the first day and your wife saying things she looked -- like vest at the hearing as a judge jackson's opening statement. thank you for sharing that story and setting the tongue. ne. you have to take a lot of curveballs. what you did for all of us, for both teams was to remind us, why we are here, democracy brought
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us here. this is not just something that is our playing field, this is america's ballpark. this is america's court. thank you for that. on the first day of judge jackson's hearing, i talked about how the fact that she was here to open things up. we were literally opening things up. this is the first hearing where we had guests because of the pandemic. as we emerge from that, we see a nominee, a judge who will walk into that court with her head held high because she is opening up back courts to make a real girl and boy to realize that anything and everything is possible. senator booker so beautifully reminded us last week that it is a moment of joy. she is truly an inspiration to young black girls, like d.c. resident mattie morgan.
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i was on a walk and her dad, i did not know him, jumped out of a car because he saw me walking to bring a letter to me that she had written the president of the united states. 11 years old. she asked president biden may she be considered when he was looking for justices. she pointed out that with her age she could remain on the court for at least 80 years. her argument was that she wanted to be the voice for children. and she said i live a few blocks from the supreme court so it will be easy for me to get there. after the judge made his nomination, she said if i'm going to be snubbed, it cannot be far better candidate. she actually was here at the hearing to witness history being made. throughout the hearing, judge jackson demonstrated her command
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and her reverence for the constitution. judge jackson has more judicial experience that four of the nominees and now justices had when they came before this committee. for people who are currently serving in the court. she will be the first person in the court to be in the room where it happened where those decisions are made with public defender experience. she knows the importance for public service for her parents, both teachers. she had that perspective of knowing that life is not always easy. she had family members who serve in law enforcement. i think this might be a moment to get some of the arguments my colleagues have and will be making. i think i might be a good person to bring this up because i am someone who is consist late ask questions -- who consistently ask questions. i always ask about the first
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amendment and many details. i was the one on this committee that one of the nominees actually apologize to, not for what i did, but for what he said. i want to get in the criticisms we heard against this great woman. when we hear about the child pornography, i see a mom who opens up her heart to all of us. and explains no one can be a perfect mom no matter how hard you try. i felt a woman in deep faith u.s. question about that and explain her view many times. let's look at the facts. in eight of the 11th child pornography cases that judge jackson handled, she gave a sentence at or above at the probation office recommendation. when she imposed other sentences, it was because she
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looked at the case carefully. by the way, she made her own decision. maybe not everyone in this room would agree with it, but she was being a judge appeared just like judges that were supported by my colleagues who made that decision for it i'm not even going to mention these judges names that i want to talk about because i do not think they should be direct into this because they have to make decisions that were below the guidelines. one of them on the second, strongly supported by one of our colleagues says when he sentence a defendant to 60 months, he sentence a defendant to 60 months, which was 60% lower than the bottom of the guidelines arranged at 151 months. another one who was complimented on the 11th circuit by our republican colleagues, he sentence a defendant to 84 months, which was 44% lower than the bottom of the guidelines. here's some trump nominees, one in the eastern district of missouri sentencing a defendant
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to 60 months peer another . another. they could have been dragged through the mud with these types of implications. lastly the committee received a letter from a formal executor from the district of columbia who wrote "had a reputation for carefully considering the circumstances of every case, and that formal and current prosecutors know that she was thoughtful and individualized in her approach to these cases. : if you want to go into the details, senator released a chart saying the average sentencing by judge jackson in cases as a 29.3 months. it is based in only four cases
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and will miss one or greater average to 52 months. if you are considering all of her nonproduction cases, distribution of pornography, yes in -- as a formal prosecutor, i know these differences. the average sentencing vote was exceed five months and i cannot believe that i am falling into these details, but i am. last, when we hear about judicial philosophies, let me quote george robert in his own hearing. he said well i have said i do not have an overarching judicial philosophy. i think we heard this great judge and how she is going to decide cases. she is going to decide cases with fairness and going to do the best thing, look at the facts and she is going to look at the law, she is going to make a decision.
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she recognizes as she told me at her hearing that public confidence in the court is crucial. that is why she has always written such a long and transparent positions to explain to the public or reasoning. she told me about her deep commitment to judicial independence. when i asked her about starting devices, she said that if there were a massive ships every time a new justices came on or the circumstances arose, there will be a concern that public confidence will be eroded. she put it, looking at the past cases and just paraphrasing that. it furthers the rule of law in this country. she is someone that understands and has shown her ability to take on complex matters. just as importantly, she is someone that understands the world world impact of the
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court's decision. she understands the words on the page are not just words. the words can change people's lives, whether they can get health care, what their options are, if they can have clean water and air. even if they're going to be able to vote, when they are going to be able to vote and how they are going to be able to vote. at this critical moment in our history, judge jackson has qualities to make sure that the court and the constitution in justice breyer's word, work for the people of today. she will bring to the court her rich experience as a judge, and working mom, a family member of a law enforcement, informal public defender and a deeply committed public servant. her story is a american one. as she put it, her success is "a
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testament to the hope and promise of this country. " it is our duty to take on the hope and promise of america and remember as we hear from our colleagues and we take this vote, this is all about that spirit of hope and promise. let's make mattie morgan proud. chair. durbin: thanks. senator cruz? thank you. sen.cruz: judge jackson is charming, talented, she has an inspiring life story. if she is confirmed she will be a historic first african-american to serve on the supreme court. i have known judge jackson for 30 years.
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i always liked her personally. but the assessment this body is charged with the constitution was making is whether her records demonstrate that she will be a justice who will vaguely uphold the constitution. now, our democratic colleagues and their chair meters -- chair leaders in the corporate reading media --. there is some irony in that. all of the democrats on this committee were only so happy to vote against the confirmation of justice amy coney barrett without facing any concerns about the sexism they were showing. there is greater irony in democrats celebrating this historic first, it would have occurred 20 years ago. an african-american woman could have served on the supreme court 20 years ago.
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except for the fact that democrats filibuster a qualified african-american woman, judge janice rogers brown. indeed if members of this committee to ask, raise her hand have you ever filibuster a qualified african-american woman in order to prevent her from going to the u.s. supreme court, three hands would go up. none of this i'll -- side of the altima but the three most senior democrats will all be obliged to raise their hands. also, joe biden watching this on c-span, he would raise his hand as well. chuck schumer will raise his hand as well. this historic first could've happened a decade ago. for the unified partisan opposition of democrats to letting it happen with a judge who was not on the hard left. a number of democrats complain
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that there were hard questions asked. that is our responsibility. everyone of the questions focused on her record. her record as a judge. her sentencing record. her academic writings, speeches to law schools. not a single republican senator asked her about her high school yearbook engage in the personal slanders that democrats made a business about. if the questions were hard, it is because her record is at the extreme. they have been 115 men and women who serve on the supreme court. if judge jackson is confirmed, i believe she will prove to be the most extreme and in furthers the left of justice ever to serve on the united states supreme court. she will be to the left of justice sotomayor, she will be way to the left.
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of justice stephen breyer. that is one what -- what radical leftist group. that is their agenda. our democratic colleagues like to pretend they do not support the agenda this justice can be predicted to follow. based on her record, if she is confirmed, i think the odds are virtually 100% that she will vote to overturn district of columbia, which means she will vote to overturn to take away the second amendment right to bear arms of every individual. if she is confirmed, the odds are virtually 100% she will vote to overturn the citizens united case, which means she will vote to take away the freeze rights
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of americans to participate in the political process. if she is confirmed, the odds are nearly 100% she will vote to strike down every single reasonable restriction on abortion across the country, that includes restrictions of partial abortion, notification of consent. if she is confirmed, the odds are nearly 4% she will vote to overturn -- hundred percent to overturn. if she is confirmed, the ox are over she will vote to give away u.s. sovereignty to international bodies. if confirmed, the odds are overwhelming she will vote to undermine end overturn decisions
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, like the landmark decision that have held school choice. understand the consequence of this nomination if she is confirmed, the odds are very high and she is going to go out school programs in this country. then there is crime. no topic has been the focus more than the record of crime. her record of crime is out of the mainstream. it is extreme. our democratic colleagues have responded with a strawman. they responded saying welcome at judges all over the country sentence below the guidelines. when you look at her record, it is not just below the guidelines. in 100% of the child cases were judge jackson had discretion 100%, she sentence not just below the guidelines, but below
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where the prosecutor asked and substantially below. but my colleagues say everybody doesn't it, that is their defense. everybody does it. let's look at the facts we are in critical cases nationally, this is all criminal cases nationally. you compare judge jackson's records terminal cases nationally, and it 29 point nine months. the national average is 45.1 months. that is all crimes, murder, right, anything that is a crime. all of that in the national statistics, she sentence this a third lower than the national average. the democrats argument, everybody does it does not stand up to the scrutiny. when you look at particular child pornography, atopic that is disturbing. democrats say she does not like child pornography, of course she
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does. no rational person desk, it is horrible. mike democratic go to the floor and they read. these are little boys and little girls being assaulted. it stayed with them their whole life. i agree with what she says. she says that and turns around and gives the defendant a criminal slap on the rest. if you look at the records, the national average is 68 months. that is every federal judge in the country. what is judge jackson's average? 29.2 months. she sentence 57% than the national average, 57%. even more disturbing distribution. the national average for distributing child pornography videos of little children being sexually assaulted.
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the national average is 135 months. 11 years, that is a long sentence because it is a horrible crime. her average is 71.9 months. that is 47% less. this is even more striking when you realize that the mandatory minimum for distributing child poorness 60 months. then other -- under federal law, you can't below -- can't go below 60 months. what that means is those disturbing child poorness 75 months longer than the mandatory minimum. judge jackson citizens -- sentences them on average 11.5 months. by the way, we just last week after the hearing got information on another case, united states versus, an
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individual who raved his 13-year-old niece. judge jackson sentenced him half of what the prosecutors wanted because he failed to register in sex registry and went to work at a daycare. while he was judge jackson's sentence, he committed another sexual assault of riep. again, she had him before the anti-sentenced him of half the prosecutor stop. r saw. this is a pattern. democrats say they do not want to abolish the police. her records demonstrate that it is 100% certain she will vote to overturn the death penalty and repeatedly, she will vote to overturn strict sentences on violent criminals, to release a criminals from jail, to overturn
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strict punishments on sex offenders. my democratic colleagues like to say when crime is skyrocketing, murder rates are skyrocketing, sexual assaults are skyrocketing, my democratic colleagues say it is not my fault. i will tell you what, when he vote to confirm justices who release criminals over and over again in a way that is widely out of the mainstream, it is the democrats fault. chair. durbin: senator? >> thank you for maintaining to the extent you can. sen.coons: i am grateful to president biden for nominating judge jackson. and to judge jackson for her courage and her engagement in this process, which at times have been withering, even
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abusive. i was impressed by the fact that she was raised by a family committed to service that raised her with a sense of dignity and integrity. a very strong sense of self, with which she carries herself in would have been some challenging moments in this committee. i believe the majority of the members of this committee have made a good-faith effort to learn about judge jackson and her record and after hours of one-on-one meetings, extensive reviews of her records and hearing from organizations and advocates, they have come away with a view. they are certain of her outstanding character and lockable qualifications. anyone who has watched the hearing saw -- impeccable qualifications.
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to be sure, there have mobbed at judge jackson, some of them i think that some brief rejoined her may be worth a few minutes of replying. judge jackson is not far from the mainstream. in fact, in over 250 reviews conducted by the american bar association, that includes judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, fellow partition or from her time as a public defender, i'm different law firms, time on the bench, her clerkships, not one found her outside the mainstream. judge jackson has nothing to do with critical race. , despite a number of engaging posters. she testifies and as the record shows, she has never cited or relied on critical race theory
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in her nine years on the bench and in her 570 prison opinions. -- written opinion. she is not a radical activist judge. i do nothing any of us should be making proclamations about what she would be doing to the trajectory of american law. as all of us who are here for the first day, remember republican appointed conservative judges, griffin from the d.c. testified in front of us that in judge jackson's nine years on the district court and to come out in more than 570 opinions, she demonstrated a diligent and careful approach. as a judge griffin told us, judge jackson is a independent dressed who is based on facts and law and not as a partisan. judge jackson is not salt -- soft on crime. i think it is hard to square the fact that two of the largest,
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most active advocacy organizations in our country, the national fraternal order of police and the international association of chiefs of police have spoken up in support of her nomination. it is hard to square that with some of the mischaracterizations that have been lobbied in her direction. she is from a family dedicated to service to our nation, service of educators, police officers, her brother who was with us in the military. people who devoted their lives to the american cause to improving and caring for other families and communities. she is absolutely not an enabler of child abusers. one conservative prosecutor, a fox news opinion writer says these were repeated also, mischaracterizing her entire character based on a few sentencing decisions are
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meritless to the point of demo -- that is a elegant way of saying worthless. in just five cases her possession of child pornography, in every case she sent the defender to jail. as my colleague from minnesota reviewed, she is in the mainstream of judges sentencing in these cases. i will just at the rate if federal judge appointed the previous administration, handed out similar below guidelines in cases of defendant who were charged with viewing, possessing, transporting merges or in child pornography. nine retired district court, circuit judge retired, this is affiliated with harvard law
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school. a letter that attest that her practice in sentencing, maria if i can. judge jackson's cases is entiret with the nationwide patterns described by the u.s. sentencing committee with the doj prosecutors and u.s. court departments recommended to the extent she departed was well within the mainstream. , of what other judges were doing nationwide, both judges appointed by both republicans and democrats. only, i thought this -- finally come i thought this was the hardest to understand. judge jackson is not going to act these up in court. there are a whole series of efforts to describe judge jackson views as different advocacy organization. as a senator whitehouse repeatedly and actively has laid out, we have too many groups that are advocating and engaging in trying to precor what our
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work is here on the judiciary committee by bringing the backgrounds, pre-packaging, advertising and selling. we can and should make real progress in opening up these dark money groups by voting for this. if later this year when we have a chance on the floor, the senate, my colleagues refused to votes of the american people can know who is funding all of this stuff, than they do not really want to know the truth. there is a lot more than i could present this morning to lay out the truth behind all of these. i would say baseless attacks on judge jackson. sadly, i think the truth about this is less relevant because a principal goal here is about stirring up the vision and a scoring political points. instead of a conversation about the significance of judge jackson becoming the first black woman to sit on our nation's highest court, what it would need to have a supreme court justice who has served as a trial judge for nearly a decade
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and a federal public finder, private practitioner and as a clerk at all levels, when it would mean for her experience for life, her grounding, her face, her character, to be part of a deliberation of our nation's highest court. instead, sadly, we are treated to a series of i think meritless attacks that were more of a distraction than substance. let me close if i can with just a few thoughts that i think matter as a move towards the vote. judge jackson testified she cares deeply about her constitution and at the rights that make us free. the truth of her statements borne out by her own life experiences, her career, record on the bench and her thoughtful and measured responses to all of our questions, even those presented in the most aggressive pub styles hurt judicial
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mythology is rooted in her understanding that the role of judges is a limited one. she is the kind of judge humble enough to know that the constitutions and the laws passed by congress they were the law is. judges have a limited role to decide questions based on the law and the facts presented. this nominee, this nominee brings me joy and a sense of pride that in as a nation we are moving in the right direction. based on her constant delivering in a america that lives up to the aspirational words written by her founders, supreme court decides cases that mean something, that has an impact on the lives of millions of americans, to teach the world what our system of democracy can actually accomplish. i think having her as someone who has served on the sentencing commission, as a public defender , in that court, it will continue to improve our nation
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in ways we do not fully know. i have confidence that in her bones she knows how important our constitution and the role is to securing liberty and equality before the law every american. mr. chairman, i mentioned ruby bridges in my opening. now, a week ago i had a under of meeting ruby bridges when i was on eight civil rights pilgrimage with john lewis. what has always struck me about the painting that norman rockwell did of her was that she was a very young girl marching into school. by an action of the united states and the print court was open to her for the first time. there were tomatoes and slurs on the wall behind her. yet, she held her chin high, she looked straight and marched forward with a sense of confidence. despite just outside of the frame of the painting being a howling angry mob.
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i found that judge jackson conducted herself in questioning here with her head held high with a sense of confidence in our constitution, democracy and in the rule of law. our role in confirming injustice to the highest court among us is one of the most solemn organizations i am honored to vote, confirming judge jackson to be the next associate justice of the supreme court. chair. durbin: thank you. >> democrats, committee have repeatedly have said that senators should look to her records and see what kind of justice she would be. although, some of our democratic colleagues find that it is engaging in a conspiracy theories to dare to ask judge jackson about that the record. her record and her answers are clear. judge jackson may be a fine woman but she has built her career on a far left activist. that did not change when she put on a black robe 10 years ago.
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in fact, judge jackson remains more of a defense attorney for criminals from the bench than a judge. across the board, judge jackson average sentence is 34% lighter than the national average for committal cases. 5% lighter than the average on her own, d.c. district court. the child pornography cases are just the most sensational examples of her soft on crime attitude. in a hearing, she talked about how disturbing these races are and how she always gave the criminals a serious talking to for their possession and distribution of videos can of young children being sexually abused. a serious lecture. these are not just numbers, these are coming on to general victim. again, judge jackson lets them off early. one of those criminals were
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wesley, who is a serious child pornography offender that judge jackson let off easily. the sentencing guidelines recommend eight to 10 years in prison, eight to 10 years. judge jackson gave him just three months. that is only won six of her own probation office recommended. still short. he did something else to get him six more months, twice the original sentence. when all 11 republicans on this committee sent a letter asking for details on what happened, judge jackson refused to provide further information. i guess so much for looking at her record. of course, her leniency is not limited to these child naga fee cases. in 2000 17, judge jackson apologized, she apologized to a factional kingpin with a history
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of drug trafficking because she because not find a way to get hemmed less and mandatory minimum sentence imposed by congress. she felt bad about being summoned to a fentanyl kingpin. a couple of years later, she found her way to twist the law. to resent's and below the mandatory sentence by making the first step back. even though congress had explicitly chosen not to make it retroactive. just as there were no victims in the case, fentanyl trafficking is not a victimless crime. anyone who does not understand that does not belong on the supreme court. judge jackson also granted compassion oh relief to a man who brutally murdered a deputy u.s. marshal by shooting him on the steps of a church at a funeral. he was repeatedly denied parole. he racked up infractions for
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things like threatening staff and possessing a dangerous weapon, not exactly a reformed saint. judge jackson granted him compassion and relief anyway. because he had high blood pressure. in 2013, a sex offender had repeatedly riep his 13-year-old niece and was arrested for falsifying sex offender records to avoid telling the government where he was living, or that he was working at a daycare. despite a restriction on his contact with children. the government ask for him to go to prison for two years. judge jackson gave him just one here. during the second year where he should have been in prison, yes, he went on to try to rape again and then bribe the victim of our testimony. judge jackson sympathizes with criminals over victims. these are iffy of the many cases
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that are in the record that all requesting -- i'll make one thing clear. if you're a criminal, you are be lucky if your case is decided i judge jackson good if you're a victim or anyone else, you better hope your case has a sign somewhere else. judge jackson could only get the benefit of the doubt to one criminal at a time, as a supreme court justice, she be able to give the benefit to my nationwide and all cases. she seems to have a real interest. that is true you should not judge a lawyer. defending criminals does not make someone ineligible to be a judge. during the bush administration, representing terrorist was all the rage. these were not popular cases. instead, public defenders office fault with each other to be able
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to work for these terrorists. judge jackson represented a form from the public defender, one she continued as a rectus. she also argued in other cases. trying to have it both ways be it on one hand, they say this is all just assigned work him on the other hand they celebrate her. whether it was a or volunteered, the fact that judge jackson did not do a good job. in three of the four cases, her filing was identical, word for word, comma for comma. the only differences was the swap out names and case numbers. let's look at those. one, her design was used in a unsuccessful attempt. the other for terrorists, a planted rocket attack.
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another of her terrorists clients were arrested on a al qaeda training clamp ♪ ♪ dashcam. in every case, she has it never had nothing to do with terrorism or how to run a taliban, despite having no reason to believe that it was copy and pasted richer. judge jackson has a habit of refusing to common sense questir hearing and, since to the record. when senator blackburn asked her what a woman was, she claimed she had no idea. i asked her who deserved to be in the united states, new americans who follow the rules or illegal aliens who continue breaking the law every day who remain here illegally? judge jackson declined to answer. when i asked whether releasing terrorist would make us more safe or less safe, she pretended to have no clue.
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of course, she refused to take an opinion on court packing, unlike the justice she replaced, stephen breyer or ruth bader ginsburg. judge jackson placed a current, not because she does not know these answers but her judicial philosophy is based on denying reality. judge jackson attempts to invent any reality demonstrating willingness for her preferred outcome. not only that she engaged in congress to make the first step act retroactively reduce descendants -- sentence of that kingpin earlier. the law passed by congress granted dhs "unreviewable. " judge jackson calls a terrible
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proposal by dhs. if the judges plays a side, not a terrible immigration proposal. the bc circuit court, noted that there could hardly be a more definitive discussion on congressional intent. she did not care. she had an anti-trump in the form of judicial opinion as part of her opinion to put her on the supreme court one day. last week sunder durbin says despite she does not have a philosophy, she does have one, you have to take the time to read any and all of her 70 opinion she has issued. for once, we see things similarly. judge jackson has a judicial philosophy. it is obvious from her record on the bench. judge jackson will coddle criminals and terrorist.
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>> senator blumenthal. sen. blumenthal: thank you, mr. chairman. >> we take you live now to the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c. april 4, 2022. i hereby appoint the honorable anne m. kuster to act as speaker pro tempore on this day, signed, nancy pelosi, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 10, 2022, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders


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