Democrat Witness: KBJ Nomination Needed for ‘More Racially Diverse Court’

Wade Henderson, interim president of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, expressed his organization’s endorsement on Wednesday of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation to the Supreme Court on the basis of what he described as the desirable goal of a “more racially diverse court.”

Henderson, an attorney, said racial diversity among Supreme Court justices provides a preferable diversity of jurisprudence. He offered his remarks during the Senate Judiciary Committee’s confirmation hearing for Brown, President Joe Biden’s nominee to the Supreme Court.

He stated, “We know that a more racially diverse court includes the perspectives of communities who have been traditionally excluded from seats of power, and that judges from different demographic and legal backgrounds infuse more viewpoints into their deliberations.”

Racial diversity on the Supreme Court allows unspecified “communities” to “trust” its decisions, he added.

He said, “Importantly, a diverse court helps communities trust that judicial decisions are not biased in favor of a select few.”

Henderson framed the nomination and possible confirmation of Brown to the Supreme Court as part of a broader historical continuity with Martin Luther King’s campaign against race-based discriminatory laws.

He remarked, “Fifty-seven years ago tomorrow, Dr. King and thousands of foot soldiers arrived in Montgomery, Alabama, after marching from Selma in their quest for voting rights. Decades later, this historic moment represents yet another step on our nation’s long march toward a more inclusive democracy.”

“As Dr. King said that day, ‘The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice,’” he concluded. “Today, we must all recognize that Judge Jackson’s confirmation to the Supreme Court will bend that arc a little more.”

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