Jewish Groups Slam Trump's Supreme Court Nominee Kavanaugh

In response to Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, Jewish groups voice concern over preserving social progress

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President Trump with Kavanaugh and family after nominating him to the Supreme Court on July 9, 2018
President Trump with Kavanaugh and family after nominating him to the Supreme Court on July 9, 2018Credit: AFP

Jewish groups responded fiercely to U.S. President Donald Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Trump's nomination of 53-year-old Kavanaugh aimed to entrench conservative control of the court for years to come with his second lifetime appointment to the nation's highest judicial body in his first 18 months as president. With the retirement of long-standing swing vote Justice Anthony Kennedy, the Supreme Court will now have a 5-4 conservative majority.  

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) expressed concerns about his positions on key social and civil issues.

In a statement released by the ADL, concerns over the protection of LGBTQ, voting, immigration and women's rights were addressed.

The ADL pointed out that Kavanaugh "demonstrated hostility to reproductive freedom and his past support for greatly expanded and unchecked executive power."

They were also concerned that Kavanaugh will be unable to separate between his personal political opinions and his duty to the bench, citing his past rulings.

“We cannot let Justice Kennedy’s retirement jeopardize hard-fought progress in securing our civil rights and civil liberties," the ADL wrote.  

Grassroots organization NCJW, that works to promote equality and principles of Judaism, expressed similar concerns writing that they are " incensed" by the nomination of Kavanaugh.

"The president’s nomination of Kavanaugh will threaten women’s reproductive rights generally and Roe v Wade in particular," wrote the NCJW.

The NCWJ's statement brought up a case in which Kavanaugh tried to block a minor immigrant's attempt to obtain a legal abortion, with the nominee claiming at the time that the court was creating "a new right for immigrants in custody to obtain immediate abortion on demand."

The NCWJ further blamed the refusal of Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell to grant a hearing to Merrick Garland, President U.S. Barack Obama's 2017 Supreme Court nomination. According to the NCWJ this resulted in a "judicial coup" in which "all three branches of government are now under the sway of an agenda designed to thwart every stab at progress for equal rights, gender equality, LGBTQ rights, health care, and voting rights."

Both the ADL and NCJW urged the Senate Judiciary Committee to carefully review the nomination of Kavanaugh and probe him to ensure that he will respect principles of equality, civil and social rights. The two organizations vowed to further their efforts towards promoting such values of their own accords. 

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