By Stacy M. Brown | NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
(NNPA) – President Biden reportedly has begun interviewing candidates to succeed Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.
The President has vowed to nominate the first Black woman to the high court, and said he expects to announce his selection by the end of February.
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia; California Supreme Court Justice Leondra Kruger; Candace Jackson-Akiwumi, who sits on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago; and J. Michelle Childs, a federal district court judge based in Columbia, South Carolina, are all viewed as strong candidates for the nomination.
Judge Brown Jackson has received letters of support from a host of union groups, including the American Federation of Labor, Congress of Industrial Organizations, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), and the National Education Association (NEA).
Additionally, more than 170 Black Harvard alumni recently submitted a letter to the White House asking that President Biden select Judge Brown Jackson.
Judge Childs enjoys the support of Democrat powerbroker Congressman James Clyburn of South Carolina.
A 1992 graduate of the University of South Carolina School of Law, Judge Childs was appointed in 2010 by President Barack Obama to serve as a United States District Court Judge for the District of South Carolina.
Upon graduation from law school, Judge Childs went to work as an associate attorney at Nexsen Pruet Jacobs and Pollard law firm, becoming the first Black female partner in a major law firm in South Carolina.
“In law school, you learn early on that your reputation and credibility will follow you throughout your career,” Judge Childs said in an interview with her alma mater.
“Your classmates will be on opposing sides in cases or matters and will be leaders in various firms, agencies, and organizations in the state, so you always want to be known for having good character as your reputation can affect your ability to resolve matters entrusted to you.”
Others reportedly being considered include 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Holly A. Thomas, federal Circuit Court Judge Tiffany P. Cunningham, civil rights attorney, and 11th Circuit Court candidate Nancy G. Abudu, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals nominee Arianna J. Freeman, NYU law professor Melissa Murray, District Judge Wilhelmina “Mimi” Wright, North Carolina Supreme Court Justice Anita Earls, and 2nd Circuit Judge Eunice Lee.
“Our process is going to be rigorous. I will select a nominee worthy of Justice Stephen Breyer’s legacy of excellence and decency,” President Biden said.
“While I’ve been studying candidates’ backgrounds and writings, I’ve made no decision except one: The person I will nominate will be someone with extraordinary qualifications, character, experience, and integrity. And that person will be the first Black woman ever nominated to the United States Supreme Court.”