The fourth and final day of Brett Kavanaugh‘s Supreme Court confirmation hearing opened with remarks from members of an American Bar Association Committee who rated President Donald Trump‘s nominee as “Well Qualified,” the highest rating available. Not surprisingly, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) praised the committee for their work and the value of their ratings. At the same time, Graham admitted that he doesn’t always agree with their opinions, noting that some in the Senate view them as “more left than right at times, as an association.”
Law&Crime founder Dan Abrams called out Graham for picking and choosing which ABA Committee ratings they like, and ignoring the ones they don’t.
“Senator Graham is basically saying, ‘Hey, I’m really, really pleased with what you guy have delivered here, and I want to emphasize that. But, you know what, sometimes I think you guys are left of center.'”
Abrams said if the ABA Committee’s recommendations are worthwhile when they support candidates Republicans favor, they should be just as worthwhile when they go against the candidates.
“The point is, either you gotta accept the ABA reports or you don’t. You can’t pick and choose the ones you like and say, ‘I’m gonna like this one and I’m not gonna like that one.’ You either say the American Bar Association is a serious organization that is trying to do nonpartisan work, or you don’t.”
Law&Crime Senior Legal Editor Ronn Blitzer agreed, pointing out the Senate’s recent history of ignoring negative ratings by the ABA.
“There have been a number of judicial nominees that were nominated by President Trump where the ABA Committee said that they were not qualified, and the Senate confirmed them anyway,” Blitzer said.
Indeed, Graham himself voted in favor of Charles Barnes Goodwin, who was confirmed to the Western District of Oklahoma, and Leonard Steven Grasz, confirmed to the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals, despite both being deemed “Not Qualified.”
Abrams also recalled that Senators used to not even consider the ABA’s opinions because they didn’t care for the results.
[Image via Law&Crime Network screengrab.