Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement after the Senate voted to confirm Jonathan Kobes to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit:
“Kobes’ confirmation exemplifies Republicans’ rush to transform the judiciary in Trump’s anti-civil rights image. His background shows a flagrant disregard for civil rights, including LGBTQ rights and reproductive freedom, and illustrates his inability to serve as a fair and impartial judge. The need for Vice President Pence to break yet another tie illustrates the extreme measures Republicans must take in their pursuit in taking over our federal courts. This confirmation serves as a stark reminder of their relentless partisan attack on the federal judiciary.”
Kobes is the 30th circuit court nominee confirmed this Congress. Now half of Trump’s nominees to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals are rated Not Qualified by the American Bar Association. Of the 11 active judges on the Eighth Circuit, there is only one woman and one person of color. The Leadership Conference sent a letter to the Senate opposing Jonathan Kobes.