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Nomination of Two Extremist Rightwing Partisans to Federal Bench Threatens Women, Constitutional Rights

National Council of Jewish Women
1707 L Street NW, Suite 950
Washington, DC 20036-4206

Contact: Amanda Lang
Director of Marketing and Communications


Nomination of Two Extremist Rightwing Partisans to Federal Bench Threatens Women, Constitutional Rights

June 6, 2017, Washington, DC – The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) today expressed its strong concerns about John K. Bush and David Stras, two of the recent nominees made by President Trump to the federal bench. NCJW CEO Nancy K. Kaufman released the following statement:

“The nomination of two extreme right-wing partisan nominees to the federal bench by President Donald Trump not only threatens the rights of women, but would also contribute to the weakening of the judicial branch as a voice for balance and fairness. NCJW has worked for nearly two decades to promote a balanced federal bench that upholds the constitutional rights of women, including reproductive rights. These two nominees would severely undermine that goal should they become judges.

“John K. Bush, nominated to the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, has recorded his extremist views in a blog full of rhetoric so inflammatory as to call into serious question his ability to serve as an impartial judge. Among other personal diatribes, he posted a photo with a message to those who vandalized a McCain-Palin sign: ‘Do it again and you will find out what the 2nd Amendment is all about!!!’ In another post, Bush likened abortion to slavery, calling them the ‘two greatest tragedies in our country.’ The blog is full of personal attacks on those with whom he disagrees. He has no particular qualifications for the bench besides his right-wing ardor.

“David Stras, now a justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, was nominated by President Trump to serve on the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. He has criticized the federal courts for wandering (his word) into ‘contentious’ areas of social policy — a list that for him includes school desegregation. He considers Justice Clarence Thomas a mentor and disparages past justices who upheld the New Deal. His record as a state appeals court justice tilts against against victims of rape, of age discrimination, of those suffering personal injury, and minority voters.

“Cases decided by our federal district and circuit courts impact every aspect of our lives, including the right to vote, the right to make personal decisions about our bodies and physical and emotional health, environmental protections, law enforcement conduct, and fundamental civil rights issues. NCJW opposes these two nominations and will work to see them defeated by the Senate.”


The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) is a grassroots organization of volunteers and advocates who turn progressive ideals into action. Inspired by Jewish values, NCJW strives for social justice by improving the quality of life for women, children, and families and by safeguarding individual rights and freedoms. More information on Facebook and on Twitter at @NCJW.


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