WASHINGTON, D.C., May 24, 2018 – Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance the federal judicial nominations of Wendy Vitter for the Eastern District of Louisiana, Andrew Oldham for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and Michael Truncale for the Eastern District of Texas. Two of these nominees, Vitter and Oldham, refused at their hearings to affirm that Brown v. Board of Education was rightly decided. Following the votes, AFJ President Nan Aron released this statement:
“It’s troubling that Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee have voted to advance two nominees who refused to say that the landmark civil rights case Brown v. Board of Education was rightly decided just one week after the 64th anniversary of the decision itself. It is shameful that Republicans are ignoring the sustained and fervent public outcry against these nominees. Today’s votes are one more step in President Trump’s attempts to makeover the federal judiciary with nominees who march in such ideological lockstep with the ultra-right that they seem unable to articulate the most basic support for racial equity in our society.”
AFJ notes that Vitter’s record of opposing reproductive rights for women includes endorsing junk-science claims that contraceptive pills cause cancer and make their users more vulnerable to violent death. Oldham’s record includes opposition to health, safety and environmental protections, as well as workers’ and consumer rights. Truncale has made numerous inflammatory comments about the judiciary, education, the Affordable Care Act, reproductive rights and immigration policy.