WASHINGTON – Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on President Donald Trump’s announcement that he intends to nominate Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States:
“Brett Kavanaugh is a direct threat to our civil and human rights and is unfit to serve on our nation’s highest court. Like President Trump, he would protect the rights of the wealthy and powerful over the rights of all – a fact verified by his prominence on Trump’s vaunted short list of potential nominees. Earning a spot on this list of anti-civil and human rights all-stars required satisfying the ultra-conservative Heritage Foundation and Federalist Society and passing Trump’s ideological litmus tests. Trump promised that, if confirmed, his nominee would overturn Roe v. Wade, and undermine the Affordable Care Act, which would have a devastating impact on those with pre-existing conditions, people of color, women, people with disabilities, and millions of others for decades to come. Access to health care is a civil and human rights issue of profound importance.
“Kavanaugh believes that the president is above the law, and he would not be a check on Trump’s abuse of power. Kavanaugh wrote that the president should have ‘absolute discretion’ to determine whether and when to appoint or fire a special counsel like Robert Mueller. And Kavanaugh has said that a sitting president should not be criminally indicted, no matter what evidence of wrongdoing is uncovered. No wonder President Trump has nominated this man to the Supreme Court, which will ultimately decide whether he, his family, or his aides can be held accountable by the special counsel.
“Kavanaugh has consistently ruled for the wealthy and powerful over the rights of workers, consumers, and women seeking access to health care. In three cases upholding aspects of the Affordable Care Act, he dissented in each of them. And he has consistently sided with industry and ruled against environmental protections. His record demonstrates that he will not uphold Supreme Court precedent that the Constitution protects individual liberty and the right of all people to make personal decisions about their bodies and their personal relationships.
“From criminal justice to immigrant justice, voting rights, and the rights of LGBTQ people, our civil and human rights hang in the balance with this Supreme Court nomination. Senators must put country over party to protect their constituents, the Constitution, and civil and human rights by rejecting this extreme nomination.”
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its member organizations, visit www.civilrights.org.