National Council of Jewish Women
1707 L Street NW, Suite 950
Washington, DC 20036-4206
Contact: Amanda Lang
Director of Marketing and Communications
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 1, 2017, Washington, DC – The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) today called on the Senate to reject the nomination of Stephen Schwartz to the US Court of Claims. Schwartz’ legal career is replete with the defense of extreme rightwing causes. NCJW CEO Nancy K. Kaufman released the following statement on his nomination:
“Stephen Schwartz is unsuited to be a member of the US Court of Claims because he lacks the requisite experience and has been a career opponent of civil rights, including voting rights, reproductive rights and the rights of transgender individuals. Notably, Schwartz lacks any experience practicing before the Court of Claims. Until last year, he worked at the far-right Cause of Action Institute, a nonprofit legal advocacy group funded by the Koch brothers. While his term would be set at 15 years, a seat on that court is often a stepping stone to a lifetime appointment on the federal bench.
“Schwartz has worked to uphold voter suppression in North Carolina, against immigrant rights in Florida, and against transgender rights in Virginia. He is defending the state of Louisiana against constitutional challenges to seven bills that severely restrict access to abortion care enacted in 2016 by the Louisiana legislature. He also represents Louisiana’s efforts to restricted women’s access to abortion care by requiring physicians to have admitting privileges at a local hospital if they perform abortions, even though the Supreme Court already has struck down a similar Texas law. Schwartz was counsel to the Christian Booksellers Association in Hobby Lobby, the case in which the Supreme Court ended the requirement in the Affordable Care Act that for-profit employers provide insurance coverage for contraception.
“While the views of a lawyer’s clients do not necessarily coincide with his or her own, at his Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Schwartz refused to discuss the ideological bent of his career. His alliance with the right would severely undermine the court’s appearance of neutrality.”
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.