Biden judicial nominee frequently reversed by DC Circuit Court
Category: News & PoliticsVia: texan1211 • 2 weeks ago • 32 comments
By: Nicholas Rowan (MSN)
President Joe Biden's pick to replace now-Attorney General Merrick Garland on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has a history of writing opinions that have been overwhelmingly reversed by her prospective colleagues.
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Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who currently sits on the U.S. District Court for D.C., has in the past several years seen a string of her opinions in prominent cases reversed by both liberal and conservative circuit court judges. The pattern was similar in each case. Jackson's long, often rhetorically inflected opinions were appealed to the D.C. Circuit where judges tore apart their reasoning.
In 2018, Jackson ruled against several of then-President Donald Trump's executive orders in which the administration had attempted to rein in the power of federal labor unions. The judge, in a 122-page decision, stripped away Trump rules limiting labor negotiations and allowing for more leeway in disciplining unproductive employees.
The administration appealed the case to D.C. Circuit, which unanimously reversed Jackson's decision on the grounds that the district court didn't have jurisdiction to hear the case in the first place. Judge Thomas Griffith, who was appointed by President George W. Bush, wrote in the majority opinion that the federal government was right to say that Jackson had "erred" in thinking the district court had jurisdiction in the matter.
Instead, Griffith wrote, the federal unions should have pursued their case through the Federal Labor Relations Authority, which falls directly under the review of the D.C. Circuit Court. Obama appointee Judge Sri Srinivasan and President George H.W. Bush appointee Raymond Randolph joined him in that opinion.
Jackson in 2020 also faced a high-profile reversal in a case involving the Department of Homeland Security. The year before, Jackson had ruled in a 126-page opinion that DHS's policy of "expedited removal" of illegal immigrants was "arbitrary and capricious." Jackson issued a preliminary injunction against the federal agency after writing that a series of activist groups led by the American Civil Liberties Union had established jurisdiction in her court.
As with the federal unions case, the Trump administration appealed, and an entire panel of D.C. Circuit Court judges agreed that Jackson was wrong in her thinking. Obama appointee Patricia Millett in her majority opinion wrote that while Jackson had improperly issued the injunction because, in this circumstance, DHS was not under the review of the Administrative Procedure Act, as Jackson had claimed.
In a dissent, Trump appointee Judge Neomi Rao wrote that she did not think Jackson was right in thinking the district court had the jurisdiction to hear the case at all. Rao did agree, however, with Millett that Jackson had been wrong to issue the injunction against DHS. Regardless of jurisdiction questions, Rao wrote, federal immigration law "categorically prohibits injunctive relief absent proceedings against an individual alien."
In one of Jackson's most prominent cases to date, she ruled that the House Judiciary Committee could sue in a federal court to force former Trump White House counsel Don McGhan to testify in the investigation that led to Trump's 2020 impeachment. Jackson's rhetoric in the 118-page decision was widely quoted at the time, as it contained several strongly worded invectives against the then-president.
"Presidents are not kings," Jackson wrote of Trump's efforts to keep McGahn from testifying. "This means that they do not have subjects, bound by loyalty or blood, whose destiny they are entitled to control. Rather, in this land of liberty, it is indisputable that employees of the White House work for the People of the United States, and that they take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."
When the administration appealed to the D.C. Circuit Court in early 2020, a three-judge panel initially upheld Jackson's decision. But later in the year, the court ruled in an en banc decision, meaning every judge took part, that while the House had standing to sue McGahn, the rest of Jackson's conclusions needed further scrutiny. Days later, another panel on the D.C. Circuit Court reversed her decision.
Jackson, who is considered a top Supreme Court contender, will join the D.C. Circuit Court if the narrowly Democratic-dominated Senate confirms her. She did not respond to requests for comment.
Tags:News, D.C. Circuit, Supreme Court, Judge, Merrick Garland, Joe Biden, DHS, Don McGahn, Donald Trump
Original Author:Nicholas Rowan
Original Location:Biden judicial nominee frequently reversed by DC Circuit Court