In a historic move, the Senate has voted to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the United States Supreme Court, making her the first Black woman to ever be appointed to that position.
The confirmation vote comes after the Senate Judiciary Committee reached an expected deadlock along party lines on whether or not to advance Jackson's nomination to a vote. Anticipating the deadlock, Democrats moved earlier this week for a full Senate vote where all 50 Democrats, including the two independents that caucus with them, and three Republicans, Senators Mitt Romney of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, voted to advance the nomination.
The confirmation follows weeks of hearings conducted by the Senate Judiciary committee where Republicans frequently attempted to paint Jackson as a partisan while avoiding any relevant questions about the nominee's numerous qualifications. Vice President Kamala Harris presided over the 53-47 vote which was only slightly delayed by Kentucky Republican Rand Paul who was not present.
“For too long, our government, our courts, haven't looked like America,” President Biden said in a statement announcing Jackson's nomination this February. “I believe it's time that we have a court that reflects the full talents and greatness of our nation with a nominee of extraordinary qualifications, and that we inspire all young people to believe that they can one day serve their country at the highest level.”
New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez said of the historic nomination, “With our vote today to confirm Ketanji Brown Jackson as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, not only has the US Senate made history, it has also witnessed — in real time — the bending of the moral arc of the universe towards justice and proved to women and girls everywhere that they too can be one of the nine guardians entrusted by the Constitution to ensure equal justice under law for all people."
Judge Jackson is set to be sworn in later this June, taking over retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer's seat.
Photo via Getty/ Tom Williams-Pool
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