Today, Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) issued the following statement regarding the timeline for nominating a Supreme Court justice to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg:
“We oppose any effort by President Trump and Senate Majority Leader McConnell to nominate and hold a vote on a replacement for Justice Ginsburg until our election is completed, a new Senate is sworn in on Jan. 3, 2021, and the next president is inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2021. This election is already underway. Early and absentee voting have commenced in multiple states across the country. Trying to rush through a nomination and appointment to the country’s highest court during this electoral period would represent a perilous setback for our democracy.
“Americans do not support this effort by President Trump and Senator McConnell. In fact, a recent Reuters/Ispos poll showed that a majority of Americans believe that the president who is elected on Nov. 3 should nominate the next Supreme Court justice. Moreover, since 2016, over a dozen Senate Republicans committed themselves to the view that a Supreme Court justice should not be nominated or confirmed in an election year.
“The American public deserves a just and fair Supreme Court, one comprised of individuals nominated and appointed by elected officials of their choosing. Selecting a Supreme Court justice requires careful time, attention, and deliberation, and should not be a decision made in haste for partisan gain. As the country continues to battle a global pandemic and an economic crisis, while confronting issues of systemic police violence against people of color, we cannot allow the president and majority leader to unfairly advance a justice who will undoubtedly only exacerbate these issues, and many more.
“The United States Senate has already advanced two divisive Trump administration Supreme Court nominees to the bench without adhering to proper confirmation protocols, and absolutely cannot do the same with a third. The only fair option that safeguards the integrity of our democracy is to wait until after the inauguration of the next president and the new session of Congress to make the Supreme Court nomination – and the Senate must not support any other approach to the selection process.”
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Follow LDF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.