Campaign Confidential

Jewish Groups Steer Clear of Judicial Fight

By Jennifer Siegel

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So far, the National Council of Jewish Women is the only Jewish group taking up the fight over the nomination of Judge Leslie Southwick to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Southwick’s nomination has been opposed by a wide array of liberal groups, including organizations representing black and gay Americans. In one past case, Southwick, then on the Mississippi State Court of Appeals, voted to reinstate a white employee who had been fired for calling a black co-worker a “good ole n—–.”

In another, he agreed in a majority decision to remove an 8-year-old child from her bisexual mother, in a ruling that referred to the woman’s “homosexual lifestyle.” Southwick also signed another judge’s separate opinion that described homosexuality as a choice that carries consequences.

As I mentioned in my article last week, California Senator Dianne Feinstein is facing the wrath of the Congressional Black Caucus after she cast the deciding vote in favor of Southwick in the Judiciary Committee.

It will be interesting to watch if other Jewish groups on the left – most notably the Religious Action Center – continue to warm the bench on this issue when Congress returns in the fall.


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