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🏛️ From Judge To Justice Jackson
The United States will have its first Black female Supreme Court Justice, and first former public defender when Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson takes the bench for the court's next term in October. Brown Jackson was confirmed by the US Senate 42 days after being nominated by President Joe Biden—a timeline that is below the modern-day average reports Axios. The new Justice is replacing Justice Stephen Breyer, who is set to retire in June or July after a 28-year term on the high court.
Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed by a vote of 53-47 in the Senate, a mostly partisan display that was swayed by 3 Republican Senators: Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and Mitt Romney.
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson will be the only Supreme Court Justice to have served as a public defender, which means she brings a unique perspective to the bench. “We uniquely understand what it means to work within those systems every day with a law degree,” April Frazier Camara, the president and CEO of the National Legal Aid & Defender Association and a co-founder of the Black Public Defender Association, told Vox. “But then we return home to communities where we see the very real experience of what mass incarceration means for our communities. Public defenders, Black public defenders, Black woman public defenders, are uniquely qualified to be fair and just.”
Justice Jackson's ascension to the high court is a major moment for the United States and a long overdue one too. Her background in public defense will be a valuable perspective, and her historic accomplishment will serve as a role model for generations to come.