President Obama has nominated Federal Judge Lucy Koh to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, reports SF Gate. Koh would be just the second Korean American on an appeals court if confirmed.
Her confirmation is uncertain, however, with the Republican majority in the Senate choosing to leave many seats vacant rather than confirm an Obama nominee. The Senate confirmed just one appeals court judge all of last year. So far this year it has also confirmed just one.
Koh was confirmed 90 – 0 for her current position on the U.S. District Court in San Jose in 2010.
Her nomination comes at a time Republicans have said they would refuse to confirm any Supreme Court nominee the President makes to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Democrats have become increasingly vocal about the stall tactics with some calling the Republicans racist for what they consider the GOP’s obstructionist tactics against President Obama’s policies.
They say President Obama has been subjected to attacks his White predecessors have not faced.
“For years, some conservatives in this country have painted the president as ‘different’ from ‘real’ Americans, using his race, his birthplace or other themes,” said Rep Mike Honda (D-CA) They have pretended to have policy differences, but for many, their true motives come from racism, fear and sometimes hatred.”
“Now, even as they try to cover themselves with false logic, these same voices use the pretext of a Supreme Court nomination to say that President Obama isn’t a ‘real’ president, that he doesn’t have the same powers and responsibilities as White presidents before him.”
20 Asian American community groups ranging from Asian Americans Advancing Justice to the National Tongan American Society to the South Asian Bar Association of North American have signed a joint letter urging Republicans to take up the President’s eventual nominee.
“AAPI communities and the American people expect the Senate to do its job. The nation needs the Supreme Court to resolve disputes and the full Court is critical to a functioning government. The court this term will hear important issues that will deeply impact AAPI communities. To prolong a vacancy on the highest court in our nation for nearly two full court terms is unconscionable and undermines the guarantee of access to justice owed to the people of this country.”
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