WASHINGTON (Nexstar) — While some are critical of President Joe Biden’s promise to nominate a Black woman to the Supreme Court, the judge the White House is considering is already getting praise — even from Republicans.
Federal Judge J. Michelle Childs of South Carolina is under consideration to fill the seat currently held by retiring Justice Stephen Breyer, the White House confirmed.
Sen. Roger Wicker, a Republican from Mississippi, criticized Biden’s promise and compared it to affirmative action. But Maine’s Susan Collins told ABC News this week that diversity benefits the court.
“The way that the president has handled this nomination is clumsy at best,” Collins said. “It adds to the perception that the court is a political institution.”
Illinois Democrat Dick Durbin, who chairs the Judiciary Committee, pushed back against the criticism.
“Take a look back at history,” Durbin said. “Recall that it was Ronald Reagan who announced he was going to annouce a woman to the Supreme Court. And he did.”
Durbin said any Black woman who has achieved the success needed to be considered for the Supreme Court has done it against great odds.
The White House said Judge Childs is just one of the candidates under consideration. She has at least one powerful Republican in her corner — South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham.
On CBS’ Face The Nation, Graham said he couldn’t “think of a better person” for the Supreme Court. “She’s considered to be a fair minded, highly gifted jurist.”
Biden said the plans to finalize his pick in the next few weeks. Senate Democrats expect the nominee, whoever she may be, to be quickly confirmed.
Breyer said he will step down at the end of the current Supreme Court session, in late June or early July.