Federal appeals court nominee Carolyn Kuhl, passed out of the Judiciary Committee on May 8, along party lines, has never resolved serious concerns about her record and legal philosophy. In addition, a new People For the American Way report shows that Kuhl gave inaccurate and misleading answers to senators' questions at her confirmation hearing.
PFAW applauds the Senators who stopped the Bush administration's attempt to force right-wing judicial activist Priscilla Owen onto the federal appeals court. PFAW activists and members had urged Senators to take a stand to deny the Texas Supreme Court Justice a powerful lifetime job on the appeals court.
The U.S. Senate has confirmed states’ rights extremist Jeffrey Sutton to a lifetime seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. This nomination was confirmed despite the valiant efforts of Sen. Tom Harkin and a number of other senators, and in spite of intense opposition to the nominee from advocates for people with disabilities and public interest groups concerned about Sutton’s impact on civil rights enforcement, environmental protection, and a range of other issues affecting Americans’ daily lives.
With the recent nomination of William Pryor to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, the Bush administration has clearly signaled that it will continue to nominate far-right ideologues for crucial appeals court seats rather than engage in the kind of consultation and compromise that would result in the nomination of more moderate nominees that could win significant bipartisan support
PFAW President Ralph G. Neas called the nomination of Alabama Attorney General William Pryor to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit “extremely troubling” and said it was “an unfortunate continuation of this administration’s efforts to pack the appeals courts with divisive far-right nominees.”
Although she has not been as directly involved in other civil rights issues as she was during the Reagan Administration, two articles concerning employment discrimination that Kuhl authored when she was in private practice raise serious concerns about her philosophy toward protecting employees from non-merit based employment decisions as well as remedying discrimination. In one, Kuhl made clear that she is opposed to affirmative action, which she called “a divisive societal manipulation.” (Ashkenazy v. Liu, No. BC 149503).
The record of Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Carolyn Kuhl, nominated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by President Bush, demonstrates that her confirmation would pose a grave threat to the rights and interests of ordinary Americans. Kuhl’s record throughout her career as a lawyer and a judge, reflects hostility to women’s rights and reproductive freedom, other civil rights and access to justice.