NCJW Dismayed by Renomination of Controversial Judges

January 10, 2005, Washington, DC -- Marsha Atkind, president of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), issued the following statement in response to President Bush’s renomination of candidates for the federal bench who failed to win confirmation by the Senate in the last session of Congress:

"It is deeply disappointing that the President has renominated the very candidates for the federal bench, including the circuit courts, who have proved so controversial that they could not be confirmed by the Senate in the last session of Congress. NCJW is on record opposing several nominees on the list, including Janice Rogers Brown, William Pryor, and Priscilla Owen whose records are particularly egregious.

"When the President was re-elected, he promised to reach out to gain 'the broad support of Americans.' He said, 'A new term is a new opportunity to reach out to the whole nation. We have one country, one Constitution and one future that binds us. And when we come together and work together, there is no limit to the greatness of America.'

"We could not agree more. But the President’s insistence on reviving his extreme right wing nominees bodes ill. We can only hope that when it comes time to nominate the next Justice to the US Supreme Court, he will seek a consensus candidate. A bipartisan approach to selecting future federal jurists would not only help depoliticize the nominations process. It would stem the erosion of faith in the impartiality of our judiciary that results from the elevation of those far from the legal mainstream of American jurisprudence to lifetime judgeships."

NCJW is a volunteer organization, inspired by Jewish values, that works to improve the quality of life for women, children, and families and to ensure individual rights and freedoms for all through its network of 90,000 members, supporters, and volunteers nationwide. It has launched BenchMark: NCJW's Campaign to Save Roe, a national effort to educate and mobilize NCJW members, the Jewish community, and friends and allies everywhere to promote a federal bench with judges that support fundamental freedoms, including a woman's right to choose.