WATCH: Psaki Scrambles To Justify Bidens Statements About Possible SCOTUS Nominations

As part of a press briefing this past Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was questioned by one reporter concerning the pledge from President Joe Biden to only nominate a black woman to the opening Supreme Court seat as Justice Stephen Breyer carries out his announcement for his upcoming retirement.

In the wake of making note that some conservative commentators are calling Biden’s pledge to be just “reverse racism” and “virtue signaling,” the same reporter questioned: “What do you say to people who are saying that that is, you know, an inappropriate way to set out prerequisites for who he’s going to choose?”

In response, Psaki stated first that a black woman having never once been nominated “shows a deficiency of the past selection processes.”

She then took a hard turn to heavy whataboutism, highlighting a promise from President Ronald Reagan to finally nominate a woman to a seat on the Supreme Court back in 1980, using a quote from his statement from September of 1981 on the Senate confirmation of Sandra Day O’Connor:

…when he nominated Sandra Day O’Connor he said, “Judge O’Connor’s confirmation symbolizes the richness of opportunity that still abides in America — opportunity that permits persons of any sex, age, or [any] race, from every section and every walk of life to aspire and achieve in a manner never before even dreamed about in human history.”

In the end, Psaki went on to claim that Bidenb has nominated “the highest number of black women to serve on the circuit court and the appellate court,” and that “he has also nominated … the highest level of Ivy League nominees.”

“He has nominated a broad sway of extremely qualified, experienced, and … credentialed nominees, and done that by also making them incredibly diverse,” stated Psaki to end the comments.

In regards to this extreme whataboutism, Jonathan Turley, a legal scholar, stated in an op-ed posted recently that the parallel drawn between Biden and Reagan does not even apply:

Various commentators insisted that Biden did exactly what Reagan did in 1980 when he pledged to appoint a woman to the Court. The comparison, however, shows the opposite. Reagan did not exclude anyone other than women in being considered while making clear that he wanted to give one of his vacancies to a female candidate.

Turley went on to add: “Reagan never pledged to only consider women and in fact considered non-female candidates. One of the leading contenders was considered Judge Lawrence Pierce, an African American trial court judge.”

TRANSCRIPT:

REPORTER: Just to put a little bit [of a] finer point on what you just got to at the end of that — you know, there have already been conservative commentators talking a bit about why a black woman that’s — to commit to that is reverse racism or some kind of signaling — virtue signaling or something like that. What do you say to people who are saying that that is, you know, an inappropriate way to set out prerequisites for who he’s going to [choose]?

PSAKI: Well, first, we’d say that the fact that no black woman has been nominated shows a deficiency of the past selection processes, not a lack of qualified candidates to be nominated to the Supreme Court.

I’d also note — I’ve heard that some conservatives may be fans of President Reagan, and when he — former President Reagan — and when he nominated Sandra Day O’Connor, he said, quote, “Judge O’Connor’s confirmation symbolizes the richness of opportunity that still abides in America — opportunity that permits persons of any sex, age, or [any] race, from every section and every walk of life to aspire and achieve in a manner never before even dreamed about in human history.”

I’d also note, if you look at the president’s own record, not only has he nominated the most — the highest number of black women to serve on the circuit court and the appellate court, but he has also nominated, across the board, the highest level of Ivy League nominees, right? He has — he has qual- — he has nominated a broad sway of extremely qualified, experienced, and credential nominees — credentialed nominees, and done that by also making them incredibly diverse.

And so the president’s view is that it is long past time to have a black woman on the Supreme Court, and that it, again, reflects challenges or deficiencies in the past processes.

 

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