PFAW Statement on Judiciary Committee Hearing on Trump Nominee Howard Nielson
January 10, 2018 - In response to the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearing today on judicial nominees including Howard C. Nielson, Donald Trump's nominee for United States District Court Judge for the District of Utah, People For the American Way senior legislative counsel Paul Gordon issued the following statement:
"At today's hearing, Howard Nielson did nothing to adequately address the enormous concerns that have been raised about his long record of extremism and contempt for the rule of law. This is particularly true with respect to the fears that were raised by his willingness to file a brief arguing that gay judges should be prevented from hearing cases about gay rights. All of these issues highlight profound concerns about Nielson's respect for the rule of law.
"Since the beginning of President Trump's administration, Republicans in the Senate have been rushing to rubberstamp profoundly unfit and unqualified nominees to the federal bench. Nielson is a prime example of the kind of nominee that senators of both parties should stand up against. It's up to Senate Republicans to decide if they'll stand up for the integrity of our courts or abdicate their constitutional responsibility to fully vet nominees to the federal bench."
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy.