The confirmation hearing of Ketanji Brown Jackson has been dominated by allegations by Missouri Senator Josh Hawley that the Supreme Court nominee has gone easy on the cases concerning child sexual abuse and the possession and viewing of child pornography.
The Missouri Senator publicly introduced the case on Twitter and elaborated on it during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. As the hearings continue, the questions that Hawley’s cases have raised still need resounding, solid answers from not just Jackson, but also the Congress as well as the entire justice system.
Republicans to lend support to Jackson
Defenders of Jackson have argued that she has sentenced the wrongdoers correctly, using the guidelines provided and the requests of the prosecutors. Such adjustments are only standard practice, in the contemporary interplay of prosecutors and defenders for sentencing in such cases.
Even some prominent conservative figures like National Review’s Andrew C. McCarthy agrees with this argument. He suggests that sentencing guidelines sometimes prove to be inadequate in the face of such complex cases. He described the suggested prosecution by Josh Hawley as a “smear,” and “meritless to the point of demagoguery”.
Ted Cruz jumps into the fray
Senator Ted Cruz joined the Republicans in throwing a spanner in the works for Ketanji Brown Jackson when he questioned the Democratic Supreme Court nominee on critical race theory. Cruz dived into detail about how the critical race theory originated at the Harvard Law School, their mutual alma-mater and how race plays a delicate role in legal frameworks.
Cruz asked what Jackson thought of it to which she replied, “Senator, my understanding is that critical race theory is – it is an academic theory that is about the ways in which race interacts with various institutions,” she said. “It doesn’t come up in my work as a judge. It’s never something that I’ve studied or relied on and it wouldn’t be something I’ve studied or relied on if I was on the Supreme Court.”
“Do you think that’s an accurate way of viewing society and the world we live in?” Cruz asked.
“Senator, I don’t think so. But I’ve never studied critical race theory. I’ve never used it. It doesn’t come up in the work that I do as a judge,” Jackson replied.