Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed Thursday as the next justice for the Supreme Court in a 53-47 vote in the Senate, reported the Wall Street Journal. Judge Jackson becomes just the sixth woman to serve on the Supreme Court, the third Black justice, and the first female Black justice.
Judge Jackson will wait until Justice Stephen Breyer’s retirement this summer to step into the role but will participate in deciding which cases the court will hear in the fall. The resignation of Justice Breyer and replacement with Justice Jackson will maintain the 6-3 split of conservative and liberal judges.
Senator Raphael Warnock, one of only three Black senators currently, described Judge Jackson’s ascendency as one that “embodies the arc of our history,” and that she possesses the “legal acumen, sharp intellect, and the kind of temperament we need.”
Judge Jackson’s hearings contained remarks that particularly resonated with working mothers particularly, those who have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Girls, I know it has not been easy as I have tried to navigate the challenges of juggling my career and motherhood,” Judge Jackson said in her opening statement Monday, speaking to her two children, before the Senate Judiciary Committee as reported by ABC News. “And I fully admit that I did not always get the balance right. But I hope that you have seen that with hard work, determination, and love, it can be done,”
At the onset of the pandemic in 2020, it’s estimated that approximately 3.5 million mothers of school-age children withdrew from active work; collectively women have lost more than 1.8 million jobs since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic as reported by the National Women’s Law Center.
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