From the Human Rights Campaign:
“Americans deserve a full Supreme Court bench, and President Obama’s nominee deserves a hearing. 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,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “The Supreme Court has a sacred responsibility to uphold the rights of all citizens, and we must hold accountable any politicians who tamper with our nation’s highest court for their own gain.”
Judge Garland has served on the federal bench and in public service for almost 25 years. He was appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1997, and currently serves as the Chief Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. After graduating from Harvard University and Harvard Law School, Judge Garland served as a judicial clerk for Judge Henry Friendly on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, and for U.S. Supreme Court Justice William Brennan. HRC will continue examining the record of Judge Garland on issues affecting the LGBT community. Moreover, we look forward to the Senate’s thorough examination of his judicial philosophy and record.
The decisions made by the Supreme Court establish important legal precedents that impact the daily lives of all Americans, including those who are LGBT. This year alone, the Court is expected to rule on many critical issues–including affirmative action, immigration, religious refusals and abortion rights–and the American people deserve a fully-functioning Court with nine justices seated and considering cases before it.
In case you, our readers are interested Garland’s history with the LGBT community it is not extensive and it is spotty. According to Keen News Services, which reports on national LGBT legal and political news:
Garland joined a decision that upheld a Federal Communications Commission action against the operator of a low-power radio broadcaster serving the gay community. And he joined then D.C. Circuit Judge John Roberts Jr. in a decision rejecting police liability for misconduct by officers who sprayed a chemical deterrent on members of a pro-gay protest group during President George W. Bush’s first inaugural parade.
In regards to other social issue, SCOTUS Blog writer Tom Goldstein describes Garland as more conservative on the rights of criminal defendants but more left-leaning on things like freedom of speech and environmental issues.
Perhaps someone should pass this information on to HRC.