Obama’s Supreme Court Choice a ‘Slap in the Face,’ Black Women’s Group Says

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Avis Jones-DeWeever, executive director of the National Council of Negro Women, addresses an audience of Black elected officials, business people and community leaders during the White House African American Policy Forum in Jackson, Miss., Wednesday, June 13, 2012. A number of federal officials from several agencies discussed issues such as nutrition, poverty, housing and home ownership as well as how job creation affect Black people specifically. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Avis Jones-DeWeever, executive director of the National Council of Negro Women AP Photo by Rogelio V. Solis

A Black women’s group says President Obama  let them down because he did not choose a Black woman to become the next member of the Supreme Court.

According to Avis A. Jones-DeWeever, founder of the Exceptional Leadership Institute for Women, Obama’s pick was a step back for the country, Black women and justice reform.

Her organization focuses on providing mentors and teaching women about various entrepreneurial skills to advance their careers and start businesses. The welfare and success of Black women have been a priority for the organization and Jones-DeWeever.

“The fact that he would once again look over Black women for this specific appointment is an absolute slap in the face to his top supporters,” she said about the nominee, federal appeals court Chief Judge Merrick Garland.

Garland has come under fire for his moderate rulings, and to many his nomination means a regression in terms of criminal justice reform. New York Daily News social justice writer Shaun King didn’t care for the pick either.

King believes the choice was a political maneuver rather than a passion pick. Garland has been vehemently against criminal justice reform and his record does not make liberals enthused for his confirmation. If Republicans fail to confirm a nominee who is moderate in most rulings and conservative in others, it shows that they are not willing to compromise at all.

Garland will be Obama’s third pick for the high court, and this bothers Republicans.

According to Tom Goldstein, who has argued 38 cases before the Supreme Court, Garland’s record in 10 criminal cases showed a stark disagreement with his liberal colleagues.

“He adopted the position that was more favorable to the government or declined to reach a question on which the majority of the court had adopted a position favorable to a defendant. Because disagreement among panel members on the D.C. Circuit is relatively rare, this substantial body of cases is noteworthy,” Goldstein wrote about Garland.

Black women may feel especially rejected, considering their large turnout in 2008 (68 percent) and 2012 (70 percent). They have been a dedicated voting block for Democrats and Obama during his two elections. This slight is seen as a failed campaign promise to many like Jones-DeWeever.

Jones-DeWeever said to the The Associated Press that Black women might have been inspired to lobby the Senate daily to get a Black female nominee confirmed, as they did during Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s confirmation process. But now, Jones-DeWeever isn’t “motivated to lift one finger to get his nomination through.”

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