March 02, 2022
By Mark Chesnut
You can tell a lot about a person—particularly a judicial nominee—by studying the organizations that throw their support behind that nominee.
To that point, gun-ban groups far and wide are singing the praises of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Joe Biden’s nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy left by retiring Justice Stephen Breyer.
“President Biden has governed as the strongest gun safety president in history, and we have every confidence that Judge Jackson will employ a mainstream, commonsense reading of the Second Amendment,” John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, said in a released statement. “We applaud President Biden for nominating the first Black woman to the Supreme Court, and urge the Senate to answer the call of history and confirm her without delay.”
So-called Moms Demand Action—another vehemently anti-gun, anti-gun owner organization—also joined in the praise party for the nominee.
Shannon Watts, founder of the anti-2A women’s group Moms Demand Action, was equally pleased with Biden’s choice.
“President Biden not only made history nominating the first Black woman to the Supreme Court, but he’s also nominated someone who we are confident will determine that common sense gun safety laws are constitutional,” Watts said. “Our grassroots army of volunteers across the country were proud to help elect the strongest gun safety administration in history, and today’s nomination shows the importance of that work. We look forward to supporting Judge Jackson’s nomination and call on the Senate to swiftly confirm her.”
Meanwhile, pro-gun organizations are sounding the alarm about Biden’s nomination to the high court and, unlike what gun-ban groups would like you to think, the pro-2A organizations’ concerns have nothing to do with her gender or race.
“Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has never affirmed that the Second Amendment protects the individual, fundamental right of all Americans to keep and bear arms for the defense of themselves or others,” the National Rifle Association (NRA) said in a released statement. “Consequently, the NRA is concerned with President Biden’s decision to nominate her to the Supreme Court of the United States at a crucial time when there are vital cases that will determine the scope and future of the Second Amendment and self-defense rights in our country.? As we always do, the NRA will monitor her statements during the confirmation process and advise our members accordingly.”
The fact that Jackson hasn’t been involved in Second Amendment-related cases as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, which she has served on since last year, might even be one reason Biden nominated her, giving pro-2A organizations less to use against her in trying to stop her nomination. However, having a hero like retiring anti-gun Justice Stephen Breyer does raise a number of red flags.
The Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC), while concerned about the nomination, is taking more of a wait-and-see approach to the nomination.
“As we’ve said before, the justices of the Supreme Court should, and indeed must, do what the Constitution’s text and liberty compel,” the organization said in a statement following the nomination announcement. “One need not look further than the current Russian invasion of Ukraine to fully comprehend that the human right to keep and bear arms is as relevant and necessary today as ever.
“Judge Jackson, who served for a time as an assistant public defender, should have first-hand experience of just how evil and corrupt the criminal justice system is, using coercive plea bargaining to avoid constitutionally required jury trials and putting people in cages for non-violent possessory offenses such as merely possessing common semi-automatic firearms or carrying a handgun without a license in New York, California, and other states where governments are openly hostile to the Second Amendment rights of peaceable individuals.”
Some Republican senators are already expressing skepticism and look forward to questioning Jackson thoroughly.
“Ultimately, I will be looking to see whether Judge Jackson will uphold the rule of law and call balls and strikes, or if she will legislate from the bench in pursuit of a specific agenda,” Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, who voted against Jackson’s nomination to the D.C. court last year, said in a released statement.
Jackson would have to be approved by the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee and then the full Senate to become the first Black female Supreme Court Justice.
Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for more than 20 years.