The Republican majority in the U.S. Senate is successfully filling judicial vacancies with conservative judges. The Democrats are not happy about that, especially the liberals associated with Demand Justice. That group has launched a social media campaign against the Federalist Society to discourage Democrat senators from voting for President Trump’s nominees.
Demand Justice is a liberal dark money organization, a left-wing judicial advocacy group. The group formed in 2018 and is led by Brian Fallon. Fallon is a former adviser to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. He also was once Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s spokesman.
The group is still angry about Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court. In retaliation against the Federalist Society, Demand Justice has launched an ad campaign on LinkedIn and Facebook against major law firms that sponsored a recent dinner. This year, the Federalist Society’s annual dinner, a formal event, featured Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh as the keynote speaker. About 2000 people were in attendance. Demand Justice responded by protesting the dinner and Kavanaugh’s participation. They projected the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford on a big screen across from the gala, as well as employing an organized protest by women in Handmaid’s Tale costumes.
There are also handmaids standing outside the Federalist Society-Brett Kavanaugh dinner. As Federalist Society members pass by them in tuxedos. pic.twitter.com/4Q4zTLJdEL
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) November 14, 2019
Since there is no way Demand Justice will get its wish to see the impeachment of Justice Kavanaugh, the plan now is to run ads on LinkedIn and Facebook against the corporate sponsors of the Federalist Society’s dinner.
The ads feature photos of a snarling Kavanaugh, along with Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who accused him of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers, a charge he denied. “The Federalist Society is rebuilding Kavanaugh’s image” through events such as its annual dinner, the ad charges, so why are the law firms paying for it?
Sponsored by Demand Justice, the ads target a half-dozen prominent firms that sponsored the dinner, such as Kirkland & Ellis, where Kavanaugh served as a partner, as well as Sullivan & Cromwell, WilmerHale and Consovoy McCarthy, where a senior partner was recently confirmed as a federal appellate judge.
The leadership of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has really been spotlighted during President Trump’s first term in office. The number of nominees confirmed during his time in office so far has outpaced that of his predecessors – more than 160 federal judicial nominees, including 48 appellate court judges. Trump’s confirmed nominees are responsible for filling about one-quarter of current federal appeals court judicial seats. This is important because it’s a correction against the liberal control of many courts across the country. The judges seated during Trump’s administration will shape judicial decisions for many years into the future, certainly a generational cycle. This is very good news for conservatives.
Many people voted for Trump because of judicial nominees and the judiciary, especially the Supreme Court nominees. With the health of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg somewhat iffy lately, this no doubt weighs on those, like the people working with Demand Justice, trying to maintain the liberal status quo. Trump pledged to work with the Federalist Society when he ran for the presidency and listen to their recommendations for nominations. The conservative organization continues to advise President Trump.
Mitch McConnell promises to continue to make filling judicial vacancies a priority.
Senate Majority Mitch McConnell of Kentucky hailed Trump’s record on reshaping courts in an appearance with the Republican president this month. “And Mr. President, we’re going to keep on doing it,” he said. “My motto is: Leave no vacancy behind.”
The Senate will begin considering eight more judicial nominees next week, including Sarah Pitlyk, a former Kavanaugh clerk who was deemed unqualified by the American Bar Association. Pitlyk, who has never tried a case, works for an anti-abortion-rights group. Many Democrats opposed her nomination.
Demand Justice has opposed the confirmation of Steven Menashi, a former White House lawyer. President Trump named him to a New York-based appeals court. Brian Fallon is upset that Trump is “larding up the judiciary with people who are loyal to him”. It’s a silly complaint. Democrats nominate liberals to the bench, just as Republican presidents nominate conservative-leaning judges. Fallon has fallen out of favor with some Democrats along the way. He ran an ad, for example, criticizing Senator Chris Coons for voting for Trump nominees. Fallon claims the pressure is working – in 2019, Democrat support for nominees has plunged to 28%. With the presidential election coming up, this isn’t too surprising, given the divide between the two parties. The far left is in control of the Democrats and Demand Justice plays a part in that.
Demand Justice isn’t always successful, though. Both Menashi and Appeals Court Judge Neomi Rao were confirmed. Democrats unanimously opposed both nominees. Rao was criticized for having never tried a case in court. Her’s is a lifetime appointment. Funny, Democrats were happy to confirm Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court, a lifetime appointment, though she never tried a case in court. She went to the Supreme Court after serving as Obama’s Solicitor General.
Elections have consequences. The direction of our judicial system is moving to a better place, thanks to the last presidential election. If Hillary Clinton had won the 2016 election, the story would be quite different. It’s just another reminder that any day Hillary Clinton isn’t president is a good day.