Tracking the latest developments in the fight for a fair America
Tomorrow, the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on three judicial nominees: Halil Ozerden, Justin Walker, and Lee Rudofsky. Each in their own way belies any pretense that conservatives care about an independent judiciary, unbiased jurists, or —to parrot a standard GOP talking point — judges who will only interpret the law, not make it. Their nominations lift the veil off the conservative objective to use the courts to achieve their political and policy ends.
In reality, Republicans expect loyalty, not independence, from judges. These nominations illustrate that they are unabashed in their wish to pack the courts with ultraconservative hyperpartisans rather than neutral judges who will dispassionately apply facts to law. Read more
President Trump nominated Daniel M. Traynor on September 19, 2019 to the United States District Court for the District of North Dakota.
In the past few years, Traynor has frequently taken to Twitter to criticize liberals on health care and immigration, spread right-wing conspiracy theories, and show his strong support for President Trump and his agenda.
We highlight some of Traynor’s twitter comments below because we believe greater scrutiny by the Senate is warranted; they demonstrate Traynor’s extreme partisanship, lack of judicial temperament, and raise questions regarding his ability to a be fair-minded and unbiased judge. This blog does not attempt to analyze the entirety of his record.
(“I will respect precedent!” –members of the conservative majority on the Supreme Court whispered quietly into the wind as they raced back to the partisan enclaves they crawled out of…)
By Julianna S. Gonen, National Center for Lesbian Rights
Many in the LGBTQ community are watching in horror as state after state enacts draconian bans on abortion in what seems like a competition with one another to see which can go farthest in its legislative assault on reproductive freedom. But if any of us have been tempted to feel relieved that at least they’re not attacking us, we should think again. Because the right to end a pregnancy is very much an LGBTQ concern.
“The Feres Doctrine leads to not only medical malpractice but also the abuse of power, mistreatment of survivors, lack of transparency and lack of accountability.”
-Alexis Witt, the widow of Air Force Sergeant Dean Witt
In 2003, Air Force Sgt. Dean Witt had a routine appendectomy at Travis Air Force Base. Tragically, after the procedure, Witt’s nurse administered a lethal dose of fentanyl and incorrectly inserted a breathing tube into his esophagus, depriving his brain of oxygen. Witt was left in a vegetative state for three months until his wife, Alexis, decided to have her husband’s feeding tube removed. The same nurse was linked to at least three other deaths, including the death of another airman just a year prior to Witt’s death.
In any other circumstance, Mrs. Witt would be able to hold accountable those whose negligence caused her husband’s death. However, because of a nearly 70-year-old Supreme Court decision that
prohibits active duty servicemembers from suing the government, including for medical malpractice, Mrs. Witt is left without recourse.