If you think the Left doesn't discriminate based on race then you haven't been paying attention to judicial confirmation process for the past few years.
First there was Miguel Estrada. Remember him?
Estrada would have been the first Hispanic ever to sit on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, often described as the second most important court in the country because U.S. Supreme Court nominees have so often come from its bench. Indeed, by the time President George W. Bush named Estrada as one of his first judicial nominees, Estrada had already lived the American dream.
Estrada immigrated to the United States from Honduras with his family as a teenager, learned English, and graduated with honors from Columbia College and Harvard Law School. And that was just the beginning of his amazing success story. After law school, Estrada clerked for a federal appellate judge and then for Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court before joining the U.S. Department of Justice, eventually serving as an attorney arguing cases before the highest court in the land as an Assistant to the Solicitor General of the United States. Estrada then became a partner with one of America's most prestigious law firms.
But despite being a role model not only for other Hispanics but for anyone who still believes in the American dream, liberal groups demanded that Senate Democrats filibuster Estrada to keep him off the bench. In fact, according to a memo describing the strategy of Senate Democrats and their liberal special-interest puppet masters, Estrada's nomination was especially dangerous and had to be stopped because he was "Hispanic."
Then there was Janice Rogers Brown. Remember her?
Like Estrada, Brown rose from humble beginnings. The daughter of an Alabama sharecropper, Brown began her education in the still segregated South, and eventually worked her way through California State University and law school at UCLA. Then Brown gave back to that state, dedicating herself to public service. In 1996, Brown became the first black justice appointed to the California Supreme Court, a position to which she was re-elected by California voters with 76 percent of the vote. Not surprisingly, Brown came to the attention of President George W. Bush, and he nominated her to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in 2003.
Liberal groups attacked Brown in very much the same way they had attacked Estrada. They denounced her as a "female Clarence Thomas," and claimed she would actually "push an agenda that would undermine ... equal protection under the law." Never mind that Brown was the poster child of success made possible by equal opportunity.
Fortunately, this time, the liberal special interests were unable to prevent Brown's confirmation to a lifetime seat on the federal bench. Brown was confirmed a year ago, and has been hearing cases as a federal appeals court judge since September.
But this story hasn't yet ended. Just a couple of short weeks ago the liberal groups sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee targeting another minority judicial nominee, Jerome Holmes.
If confirmed, Holmes would be the first black judge to sit on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, which hears cases from Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming. Like Estrada and Brown before him, Holmes should be a role model for the minority community. He graduated from Wake Forest University, Harvard University and Georgetown University Law Center. Holmes clerked for a federal district judge and then a federal appellate judge, later serving the country and the people of Oklahoma for more than a decade as a federal prosecutor before becoming a partner in a prestigious Oklahoma law firm.
But again the liberal special interests don't care about Holmes' qualifications to serve on the federal bench. Rather, they just worry about whether he will oppose their Leftist policy preferences from his lifetime seat. And, since Holmes has expressed his discomfort with the continued use of racial preferences in college admissions, he has failed the Left's litmus test. So the same liberal special interests that fought so hard against Estrada and Brown are now attacking Holmes, expressing their "deepest concerns regarding Mr. Holmes' nomination."
No one should miss the incredible irony that the groups attacking these nominees are the same organizations that claim to be the primary protectors of minority interests -- groups like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Urban League and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights. Apparently these groups no longer believe in Martin Luther King's dream that all people should "not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."June 13, 2006
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