On March 16, President Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court, yet despite his clear qualifications, including almost 25 years in public service and on the federal bench, Senate Republican leadership has continued to block all action on Judge Garland's nomination.
HRC hosted a call today for LGBT and allied organizations to provide an update on the status of Merrick Garland’s nomination, what's at stake for the LGBT community and ways that groups can help advance the nomination. Speakers on the call included HRC President Chad Griffin and Kathleen Hartnett, former Associate White House Counsel and Department of Justice Attorney.
During his opening remarks, Chad Griffin emphasized the importance of the Supreme Court to the LGBT community.
“Over the past 25 years, the LGBT community has benefited from the court’s groundbreaking affirmation of constitutional protections due to LGBT people…[and] these cases all underscore the need for nine justices on the Supreme Court bench, each with a robust understanding of the fundamental rights and Equal Protections for all Americans,” Griffin said. “And that is why the Human Rights Campaign and our partners on the call today continue to urge Senate Republicans to stop playing politics with our nation's highest court, to do their job, and to grant President Obama’s nominee the hearing he deserves. There is no doubt that Merrick Garland is a highly qualified candidate, and the Senate has a Constitutional responsibility to give him swift and fair consideration.”
The decisions made by the Supreme Court establish important legal precedents that impact the daily lives of all Americans -- and have in a number of crucial cases determined the rights of LGBT Americans. This year alone, the Court is expected to rule on many crucial issues--including affirmative action, immigration, religious exemptions and access to reproductive care--and the American people deserve a Court with a full bench.
HRC is committed to ending the obstruction of the judicial confirmation process, and earlier this year, HRC joined dozens of progressive advocacy organizations around the country for the #DoYourJob National Day of Action to urge Senate Republicans to fulfill their constitutional obligation and hold confirmation hearings for Judge Merrick Garland’s nomination to the Supreme Court. You can sign HRC’s petition calling on Senator Mitch McConnell to stop playing politics and to fulfill his constitutional obligation here.
To learn more about Judge Merrick Garland, visit HRC’s webpage on his nomination.