Ketanji Brown Jackson, Like Amy Coney Barrett, Proves That Abortion is Not Necessary for Women to Have Successful Careers
Justice Stephen Breyer is retiring from the Supreme Court after more than twenty-seven years of defending Roe v. Wade and shoring up abortion rights. What does his retirement mean for the protection of the unborn? Currently, the Court’s ideology tilts strongly conservative and pro-Life, with six Justices appointed by Republican presidents and three by Democratic presidents. The ideological makeup of the Court should remain unchanged, as the sitting president is a Democrat and is set to appoint a liberal who is committed to continuing Breyer’s commitment to abortion.
All Three of Biden’s Potential Nominees Were Mothers.
President Biden nominated Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson after weeks of keeping his shortlist a secret. He was outspoken in his intention to appoint the first Black woman to the High Court. Accordingly, speculation had centered principally on three judges who fill the bill, Ketanji Brown Jackson, Leondra Kruger, and J. Michelle Childs. All three are not only Black women but also mothers.
Judge Jackson, 51, is a mother to two daughters, one in high school and the other in college. In 2021, she was appointed to the prestigious U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and confirmed by a vote of 53 – 44. Eight Supreme Court Justices previously served on the D.C. Circuit before their appointments. Jackson, a former law clerk to Justice Breyer, has served as a public defender, federal district judge, and a member of the U.S. Sentencing Commission.
Judge Jackson and Abortion
While Jackson has not been publicly outspoken on the issue of abortion and prenatal life, it is unlikely her ideological views stray far from Justice Breyer’s. Within hours of her nomination Demand Justice and Planned Parenthood endorsed her. In 2001, while working at a law firm, Jackson filed a brief on behalf of Abortion Access Project of Massachusetts, NARAL Massachusetts, and other pro-abortion organizations in the First Circuit Court of Appeals in a case involving speech restrictions around abortion businesses. Jackson stated that she filed on the brief on behalf of her clients, but in 2021, NARAL supported her confirmation to the D.C. Circuit. Additionally, in 2018, Judge Jackson while serving on the D.C. District Court, reversed the Department of Health and Human Services decision to terminate funding for teen pregnancy prevention programs.
It is likely that Judge Jackson will be successfully confirmed. Currently, the Senate is evenly split, with 50 Republicans, 48 Democrats, and two Independents who caucus with the Democrats; control of the chamber rests with Democrats because Vice President Kamala Harris would break any tie in favor of the nominee.
As a professional woman, I commend President Biden for following in President Trump’s footsteps and appointing an accomplished woman with children to the United States Supreme Court. Like Amy Coney Barrett, the women listed above have had impressive legal careers, are young, and are mothers. Age has become an increasingly important factor as the Justices have a life tenure on the bench. Some Justices have served for over thirty years. Three decades of incremental judicial activism can have a monumental impact on America’s values, morals, and laws.
While I congratulate Judge Brown Jackson for her nomination, I earnestly hope the nominee will not follow in Breyer’s footsteps. Instead, may she turn back to the natural law and create a better America for future generations to come that are currently in danger of abortion, assisted suicide, and reproductive harm.