Senator Patrick Leahy, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, opined this morning that it might be time to look further afield for a Supreme Court justice than has become customary.
Writing for AOL.news, the Senator had the following to say:
"We can all agree that the next nominee to the Supreme Court must be well qualified, and at the top of the legal profession. I believe that the field from which to select this nominee should extend beyond the Federal Circuit Courts of Appeals. Over the years, our nation has benefited from diverse perspectives on the Supreme Court. Today's Supreme Court is the first in history to be limited to former federal appellate judges.
"The Supreme Court once included among its ranks former governors, former cabinet members, former senators and even a former president. A Supreme Court nominee with a varied background would be a welcome addition. The Supreme Court is charged with upholding the constitutional protections and liberties of every individual American. "We the People" deserve no less.
"I would like to see a nominee who will be faithful to the Constitution and its storied history. The next justice should be someone who understands and appreciates the real-world impact of the Supreme Court's decisions on hard-working Americans. I would also like to see a nominee who reflects Justice Stevens' reverence for the Supreme Court as an institution."
Amen, Senator. It's time for a public defender on the Supreme Court, or a trial lawyer representing folks in civil claims. Who better to teach the Court about the sufferings of ordinary people? Who reveres the Constitution more than a public defender, demanding daily that power honor the rights of the least among us?
How about an ordinary sort of lawyer, one who has never held political power, but who knows the power of persuasion in the well of the Court? How about someone whose law degree did not confer an expectation that all of life's blessings will come to them as a matter of right, but who attended a modest sort of school, a school the bred the modest sorts of expectation that if you work hard you can support a family?
We don't need another lawyer who served power. We need a lawyer who has confronted power and served people. We need, Senator Leahy, Gerry Darrow. Someone send this link to the Senator. Who Is Gerry Darrow?
You can read the complete text of Leahy's remarks here. Leahy's remarks