OHIO — Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman said Tuesday he won't support the lifetime appointment of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court.
Portman wrote in a statement that while he enjoyed meeting with Jackson recently, he said they "simply have a different judicial philosophy." Portman said he's worried Jackson would use her position to legislate and push public policy goals rather than impartially applying the law.
My statement on the Nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court pic.twitter.com/W87kUyAYlA— Rob Portman (@senrobportman) April 5, 2022
“Although Judge Jackson doesn’t have a long record as an appellate judge, her district court opinions, such as Make the Road New York v. McAleenan and American Meat Institute v. USDA, indicate she does not feel constrained by the plain language of congressionally-enacted statutes or judicial precedent. Based on her record, answers to questions in the Judiciary Committee, and my meeting with her, I am concerned Judge Jackson will use her position on the Supreme Court to legislate from the bench as many more activist judges have done in recent decades," Portman wrote.
Another reason is because Jackson didn't disclose her opinion on whether to add more Supreme Court justices, in which Portman called "a court-packing proposal the radical Left supports that would politicize and discredit the Court."
Jackson hasn't publicly responded to Portman's comments.
Only a handful of Republican lawmakers voiced their support Jackson's nomination, including Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine.
The Senate Judiciary Committee deadlocked, 11-11, Monday. After the deadlock, Democrats planned a new vote to “discharge” Jackson’s nomination from the committee that evening. The discharge vote ultimately succeeded, 53-47, putting Jackson's nomination up for a glide path to confirmation later this week.
The full Senate will now vote on whether to send her to the Supreme Court to replace Justice Stephen Breyer.
The vote of confidence from select Republican lawmakers would all but confirm her nomination in a 50-50 Senate, eliminating the need for Vice President Kamala Harris to cast a tie-breaking vote.
If confirmed, Jackson would become the first Black woman to serve on the highest court in the land.
Spectrum News' Ryan Chatelain, Rachel Tillman, Austin Landis and Justin Tasolides contributed to this report.