Ketanji Brown Jackson Expected to Become the First Black Woman to Sit on Supreme Court

Ketanji Brown Jackson is expected to become the first Black woman to serve in the United States Senate. CNBC reports on the Supreme Court. 

President Joe Biden has announced that federal Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson will be nominated to the Supreme Court. If confirmed, Jackson will be the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. Jackson is a current DC federal appellate court judge who has previously served as a public defender in the nation’s capital, as a commissioner on the US Sentencing Commission, and as a federal district court judge in DC, according to CNN.

During his presidential campaign, Biden promised to pick a Black woman to the Supreme Court. Justice Stephen Breyer recently announced his retirement, paving the way for Jackson, who previously worked as a clerk for Justice Breyer, and aligning with Vice President Joe Biden’s desire to promote additional public defenders to the federal bench. 

“Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson…is one of our nation’s brightest legal minds and will be an exceptional Justice,” Biden said in a tweet.

Jackson was born and raised in the Miami region, the daughter of two public school teachers who went on to Harvard Law School and graduated with honors. Even though Jackson was a front-runner from the start, Biden took his time to thoroughly vet all contenders. In the end, Jackson’s tale and expertise were what put her ahead of the pack.

“President Biden sought a candidate with exceptional credentials, unimpeachable character, and unwavering dedication to the rule of law,” a senior official told reporters. 

If approved, Jackson will join the Supreme Court as the sixth woman, third Black person, and first Black woman. Her appointment to the court will have minimal impact on the conservative majority, as the Supreme Court is still 6-3 in favor of conservatives. The nomination will now be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is dominated by Democrats. Biden is hoping for bipartisan support for Jackson, or else Democrats will have to rely on all of their members to ensure her confirmation.

One can only come this far by faith,” Jackson said. “For me, the first person in my family to go to law school, to be admitted to the bar and to practice law, all the while seeing few people who looked like me, this moment is monumental. Thinking of all the little Black girls.” 

Jackson will begin courtesy talks with senators next week, but she already has bipartisan backing. “Janna and I are incredibly delighted for Ketanji and her entire family,” House Speaker Paul Ryan recently tweeted in support of Jackson. Our political views may differ, but I have nothing but appreciation for Ketanji’s intellect, character, and honesty.

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