We Cannot Afford to Lose on Goodwin Liu, Ed Chen Judicial Appointments

If you ever want to see an Asian American appointed to the Supreme Court, join us now to support Goodwin Liu and Judge Ed Chen.

President Obama’s appointments of Judge Ed Chen to the federal district court and of Goodwin Liu to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has been held hostage by Senate Republicans for reasons that can only be described as petty politics. While these appointments certainly should not be rubber-stamped by the Senate, the appointments should at least be presented for a vote by the full Senate.

“A determined Republican stall campaign in the Senate has sidetracked so many of the men and women nominated by President Barack Obama for judgeships that he has put fewer people on the bench than any president since Richard Nixon at a similar point in his first term 40 years ago,” reported the Washington Post.

If we cannot support the President’s appointments of extremely qualified Asian Americans to the lower courts against political obstruction, how can we ever expect him to appoint an Asian American to the highest court in the land?

Several activities and events are in high gear this week to stress the importance of ending the Senate gridlock and obstructionism of these nominations.

Tuesday, September 21: “STICK” Up for Goodwin! Movement Meeting

Join David Biderman, Joan Haratani, Dale Minami, Edwin Prather, Priya Sanger, Malcolm Yeung and others on Tuesday, September 21, 2010, at 12:00 noon, for a statewide coordinated event at the Law Offices of Edwin Prather, 461 Bush Street, Suite 350, San Francisco, to support the confirmation of Professor Goodwin Liu to the 9th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals. Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

In an effort to engage the grassroots, educate the mainstream about diversity on the bench, and change the media frame on Goodwin Liu’s nomination to the 9th Circuit, the Asian American Justice Center, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association and local Asian Pacific American (APA) bar organizations have launched a “Stick” Up for Goodwin! initiative and companion website (http://www.confirmnow.org).

The website provides the story behind the initiative, the lack of APAs in the federal judiciary, why Prof. Liu is important to the APA community, and other action items such as the nomination of Magistrate Judge Edward Chen for the District Court in the Northern District of California. The website also offers social media tools and traditional action alerts to help engage community members, such as uploading photos on how the stickers are used to increase visibility for the “Stick” Up for Goodwin! initiative and to build momentum toward confirming Goodwin Liu, as well as Ed Chen.

A similar gathering takes place on the same day in Los Angeles: Tuesday, September 21, 2010, at noon, at Jenner & Block LLP, 633 West 5th Street, Suite 3500, Los Angeles (lunch and refreshments provided). RSVP to the LA event by emailing contactapaba@gmail.com.

Friday, September 24: Press Conference with Asian American Electeds on Judge Ed Chen’s Appointment

Chinese for Affirmative Action plans on holding a press conference at 10:30 a.m. to discuss Judge Ed Chen’s appointment to the federal district court and what steps members of the community can take to end the roadblock on the Senate vote on his appointment. More details will be published here when available.

Wednesday, September 29: Alliance for Justice Brown Bag Lunch Briefing on Judicial Nominations During the Obama Administration

This brown bag lunch briefing by Alliance for Justice will include information on what you can do to help ensure the swift confirmation of Goodwin Liu and Judge Edward Chen to the federal bench.  The gathering is on Sept. 29, 1:00p.m. – 2:30p.m., at Howard Rice, Three Embarcadero Center, Seventh Floor, San Francisco.

Nan Aron, Alliance for Justice president, will be the guest speaker. Light refreshments will be provided.

Senate Republicans recently prevented twenty-two out of twenty-six of President Obama’s judicial nominees from receiving an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor — despite the fact that the majority of those nominees have been waiting for several months and in two cases, a full year.  Two of those nominees, Goodwin Liu and Edward Chen, must now be renominated and reapproved by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

During this brown bag lunch you will learn more about the status of judicial nominations during the Obama Administration, the lack of diversity on the federal bench (especially for Asian American judges), and what you can do to help ensure Goodwin Liu and Edward Chen receive a vote on the floor of the Senate.

RSVP here

Finally, if you haven’t already done so, please sign a letter supporting Judge Chen on FairJudges.net and join other supporters of Goodwin Liu at ConfirmNow.org.

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