Friday, April 12, 2024

Latino Legal Minds Support Garland Nomination


Yesterday morning, President Obama nominated federal appeals judge Merrick Garland to the highest court in the land, the U.S. Supreme Court. This nomination came as a surprise to some who had hoped for a candidate that would increase the high court’s diversity. Nevertheless, many Latino legal experts stated that they support the president’s nomination.

Thomas A. Saenz, President of the Mexican American Legal and Educational Defense Fund, said that he was pleased with Garland’s nomination. “He is clearly a very experienced jurist who has been involved for over 19 years on significant cases,” adding that “he is a justice who will move the Court from where it had been with Scalia, but not move it dramatically. This is a choice that will put the Senate under pressure to recognize its constitutional duty to consider and vote on the president’s choice.”

Judge Garland has more federal judicial experience than any nominee to the Supreme Court in history. He was previously confirmed with bipartisan support in 1997. Judge Garland is the grandson of Jewish immigrants from Russia and is a considered by many as a moderate choice for what will be a politically-charged confirmation process.

“Ever since Obama has been in office, he has been diligent in pushing for diversity in his administration,” said Rafael Collazo, Director for Political Campaigns at National Council of La Raza. “His prior Court picks were both women, and one was Latina… Obviously Judge Garland is someone of the highest caliber who deserves to be considered.”

Robert Maldonado, National President of the National Hispanic Bar Association, stated, “We are glad the president put a name forward and we will undertake our own due diligence to look into Judge Garland’s qualifications and then make our assessment of the candidate.” Maldonado added that, “The president told us that Garland is someone who would be good for our communities, and we are hopeful that is the case.” Also stating, “The most important thing now is that the Senate move forward with their duty, and there does seem to be some momentum moving in that direction.”

NBC News