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A project tracking federal judicial nominations and courts.


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Letter to the Senate: 27 National LGBT Groups Oppose Confirmation of John K. Bush and Damien Schiff (07/17/17)
"We, the undersigned 27 national advocacy organizations, representing the interests of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and everyone living with HIV, write to oppose the nomination of John Kenneth Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the nomination of Damien Schiff to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. After reviewing the records of Mr. Bush and Mr. Schiff, we have concluded that their views on civil rights issues are fundamentally at odds with the notion that LGBT people are entitled to equality, liberty, justice and dignity under the law. Although neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Schiff has any judicial experience, their public statements and writings have repeatedly demonstrated not only an extraordinary lack of judgment but also plain contempt for the rights of LGBT Americans, people living with HIV, women, and other vulnerable populations. Their evasive responses to straightforward questions from your colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee only confirmed our assessment that they should never have been nominated—and should not be confirmed—for a lifetime appointment on the federal bench."

National Women’s Law Center letter to Senate Judiciary Committee urging Senators to oppose the nomination of John K. Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (07/06/17)
"Mr. Bush has taken legal positions and expressed legal views that will make it virtually impossible for many who come before him as litigants, including women, to believe that he will give them a fair and impartial hearing. In addition, his statements demonstrate that he lacks the temperament to serve in a lifetime position on the federal bench."

NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) letter to Senate Judiciary Chairman and Ranking Member opposing confirmation of John K. Bush to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. (06/28/17)
"Mr. Bush’s regressive views on civil rights issues, intemperate rhetoric, extreme partisanship, and lack of sound judgment render him unfit to serve with life tenure on the federal bench"

Letter to Senate Judiciary Committee from 16 national advocacy organizations, representing the interests of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and everyone living with HIV to oppose the nomination of John Kenneth Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the nomination of Damien Schiff to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. (06/12/17)
"After reviewing the records of Mr. Bush and Mr. Schiff, we have concluded that their views on civil rights issues are fundamentally at odds with the notion that LGBT people are entitled to equality, liberty, justice and dignity under the law. Although neither Mr. Bush nor Mr. Schiff has any judicial experience, their public statements and writings have repeatedly demonstrated contempt for LGBT Americans, people living with HIV, women, and other vulnerable populations."

Demos, Every Voice, and People for the American Way letter to Senate Judiciary Committee (06/09/17)
"We the undersigned organizations write to oppose the confirmation of John K. Bush to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit due to his troubling views on the issue of money in politics. We also express here our concern about Damien Schiff’s nomination to the Court of Federal Claims. ... Damien Schiff’s views on money-in-politics are equally disturbing. The Court of Federal Claims does not rule on relevant cases, but can be a launching point for future judicial appointments so we feel compelled to register our concerns at this stage."

National Council of Jewish Women letter to Senate and Judiciary Committee leaders in strong opposition to the nomination of John K. Bush to the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. (06/09/17)
"The confirmation of this extreme right-wing partisan nominee to the federal bench by President Donald Trump would not only threaten the rights of women, but would also contribute to the weakening of the judicial branch as a voice for balance and fairness.... his language is so inflammatory and offensive that it disqualifies him for a lifetime appointment to the federal bench."

National Center for Lesbian Rights letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman and Ranking Member in opposition to the confirmation of Damien Schiff and John K. Bush to the federal bench (06/09/17)
"It is difficult to imagine, however, that any lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender plaintiff would be accorded the respect and fair treatment they deserve if they came before nominees Bush or Schiff. Both of these individuals have extensive records of public writings and publicly expressed views of LGBT people that render them unfit to serve in a role that requires impartial judgment."

People for the American Way letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman and Ranking Member in strong opposition to the confirmation of John K. Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (06/09/17)
'[B]ased on Bush’s substantive legal positions and the toxic way he engaged in political discourse while hiding behind a mask of anonymity, it is astonishing that he was even nominated. On legal issues, we are alarmed by some of his comments regarding money in politics.... he made the obvious analytic mistake of thinking that voluntary donations to public funding are, in fact, involuntary. And even if the public funding came from ordinary tax income, his constitutional theory has no support in case law and would serve only to worsen an already serious crisis facing our democracy.... Perhaps even more ominous are Bush’s comments on freedom of the press and freedom of speech about public figures. He has criticized New York Times v. Sullivan, the seminal Supreme Court case protecting media and reporters from defamation suits from government officials they anger, strongly suggesting it was incorrectly decided.... Aside from the substance of his beliefs, the manner in which he has communicated them are not even close to appropriate for someone now seeking to be a federal judge.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman and Ranking Member in opposition to the confirmation of John K. Bush to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (06/07/17)
"Mr. Bush has a record of extreme partisanship and does not appear to possess the temperament needed to serve as an impartial federal judge. ... In light of Mr. Bush’s extreme record, The Leadership Conference urges you to reject the nomination of Mr. Bush to the Sixth Circuit."