Biden nominates several federal judges, including replacement for Garland

Ketanji Brown Jackson

US President Joe Biden announced his first judicial nominations Tuesday, stressing diversity in yet another break with the policies of Donald Trump.

"This trailblazing slate of nominees draws from the very best and brightest minds of the American legal profession". Biden pledged during the campaign to nominate a Black woman to the Supreme Court.

Jackson was nominated to the federal bench by former President Barack Obama in 2012.

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts, as well as late Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia all previously served on the D.C. Circuit.

She had a varied career before becoming a judge, working as a lawyer in private practice and as a public defender.

Critics of the GOP effort to remake the US judiciary under former President Donald Trump on Tuesday welcomed President Joe Biden's first slate of judicial nominees-11 candidates who, according to the White House, reflect his "deeply held conviction that the federal bench should reflect the full diversity of the American people-both in background and in professional experience".

The nominees, which include nine women, must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. "They not only represent the best of New Jersey and our state's values, but they reflect the state's proud and rich diversity-critical elements for any effective judiciary sworn to uphold equal justice under the law", said Senator Menendez. In a letter in December, the incoming White House counsel, Dana Remus, told Democratic senators that Mr. Biden would be looking for judges from groups historically underrepresented on the bench.

Biden's list of 11 nominees is headlined by Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who would replace Attorney General Merrick Garland on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The White House said Biden's choices reflect his strong belief that the federal courts should reflect the "full diversity of the American people" in background and professional experience.

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If she is confirmed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Jackson, 50, would bring a wealth of experience on environmental issues and a reputation as an evenhanded judge who's not afraid to cross ideological lines. She attended Harvard Law School, has clerked for prominent judges and served as a a public defender.

Griggsby, who is Black, has served as a judge on the US Court of Federal Claims since 2014. Trump and McConnell teamed up to confirm 54 judges to the circuit courts with 234 total federal judges. Jackson-Akiwumi a partner at Zuckerman Spaeder, Washington, D.C. who focuses "complex civil litigation, white collar criminal defense, and investigations", according to the White House press release.

Maryland US Magistrate Judge Deborah Boardman to the US District Court for the District of Maryland.

Biden began his term with 68 judicial vacancies, including seven appellate court vacancies and 61 district court vacancies.

Judge Lydia Griggsby to the US District Court for the District of Maryland. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. She has served on the US District Court for the District of Columbia since 2013. Neals now serves as the county counsel and acting administrator for Bergen County, New Jersey. "With respect to Circuit and District Courts, none of the last four administrations had nominated more than two candidates by this point in their presidency".

Jackson, a judge on the federal district court in the District of Columbia, was widely considered a leading pick to the D.C. Circuit, which is considered the nation's second most-powerful court and a springboard to the Supreme Court. Previously, Pan worked as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in D.C.

Quraishi, who is Muslim and of Pakistani ancestry, is a U.S. magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, a position he was appointed to in 2019. Rodriguez has been a partner at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP in Denver since 2019, handling cases involving complex litigation and government investigations.

In a 2019 case over construction of a border wall between the United States and Mexico, she found that the court did not have jurisdiction to hear environmentalists' challenge to the Trump administration's decision to exempt itself from key environmental laws (Greenwire, Sept. 5, 2019).

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