Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer has announced his retirement from the high tribunal pending the confirmation of his successor—presumably this summer.
The departure of the liberal Breyer who has been on the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) for 28 years affords Democratic President Joe Biden his first opportunity to nominate a likeminded jurist.
As a presidential candidate, Mr. Biden promised that if given the chance, he would name a black woman to the court.
And names of possible nominees that have surfaced include several well-qualified persons who would fulfill that pledge.
There appears little doubt that the president will choose a liberal who will be embraced by most if not all Democrats in the Senate where confirmation occurs. Even more certain is that she will be a black female.
As several pundits have noted, the new justice will not change the current 6-3 conservative SCOTUS majority.
However, until confirmation hearings begin, it’s premature to predict how any of possible nominees might rule on the most contentious issues before the high court.
Mr. Biden’s vow to limit his search to black women candidates is disappointing at least and discriminatory at worst. By excluding qualified whites, Latinos, Muslims, Asians and the LGBTQ+ community, the president will illustrate that he is not truly embracing “equity and inclusion” that is the mantra of many democrats—especially the progressive wing of his party.
The next SCOTUS associate justice will fulfill the president’s campaign promise. But the narrow field of candidates will also restrict the breadth of ideological strength and perspective that should infuse the upcoming senatorial hearings.
That is an injustice.