Young leaders Urge US Senate Leadership to Hold Hearing and Vote on Supreme Court Nominee

March 15, 2016


Hon. Mitch McConnell
U.S. Senate Majority Leader
317 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Hon. Harry Reid
U.S. Senate Minority Leader
522 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Hon. Charles Grassley
Chairman, U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary
135 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Hon. Patrick Leahy
Ranking Member, U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary
437 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Majority Leader McConnell, Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley, Minority Leader Reid, and Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Leahy:

We, as young leaders committed to justice and equality for all, strongly urge you to carry out your Constitutionally prescribed duties of the position of a United States Senator and promptly and fairly consider any individual President Obama nominates to fill the current vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court. To do otherwise would be reckless, disrespectful to the Constitution as well as all three branches of the federal government and the American people, and frankly, utterly irresponsible.

Under the terms of the United States Constitution, Article II, Section 2, Clause 2, “…[The President] shall…nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint …Judges of the Supreme Court…” President Barack Obama is and will be President for the next 11 months, and it is his responsibility to move as expeditiously as possible to fill this vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court, opened with the passing of Justice Antonin G. Scalia, so that cases may be resolved, guidance may be provided to our judicial system, and justice may be served. It is also the clear responsibility of the United
States Senate to consider carefully any nominee sent forward by the President as expeditiously as possible.

There exists a long history of challenging, through the U.S. Courts, laws which are unfair and counter to the tenets of the U.S. Constitution. For any person or group of individuals to intentionally leave a vacancy open for what most experts believe will be at least a year on the court of last resorts would be unprecedented, irresponsible, and disrespectful of the very Constitution under which we live, and you serve.

Given the importance of the position which was left vacant by Justice Scalia’s passing, we firmly urge you to move forward with your Constitutional responsibility of “advise and consent” and hold hearings, and ultimately a vote, on the next nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Thank you for your attention to our concern.

For Justice Sake,

Stephen A. Green
National Director, NAACP Youth and College Division

Mary-Pat Hector
National Youth Director, National Action Network

Carlos J. Clanton
President, National Urban League Young Professionals

Derick Dailey
National Chair, Black Law Students Association

Natalia Abrams
Executive Director, Student Debt Crisis

Brendien Mitchell
President, Howard University Student Association

Will Chandler
President, Morehouse Student Government Association

LaKesha S. Womack
Chairperson, Young Adults in Christian Ministries
African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

Chinelo C. Tyler
International President, Young People’s and Children’s Division
African Methodist Episcopal Church

Dr. Felecia Commodore
Young Adult Representative, Connectional Lay Organization
African Methodist Episcopal Church

Martinique Mix
Connectional President, Richard Allen Young Adult Council
African Methodist Episcopal Church

Brandon J. Smith
International President, Varick International Christian Youth Council
African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

Autumn Kyles
International Second Vice President
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Anthony Kadri
2nd Vice Grand Basileus
Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.

Knyra C. Ratcliff
International Second Grand Anti-Basileus
Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.

Devon J. Crawford
Co-Chair, Al-Chemy-in-Color
University of Chicago Divinity School

Leland Shelton
President, Harvard Black Law Students Association

The Reverend James Wesley Dennis III
President, Vanderbilt Black Seminarians

Christopher McCroy
President, Martin L. King, Jr. International Chapel Assistants
Morehouse College

Spanky F. Edwards
Founder/CEO National Peace and Nonviolence Leadership Institute
Vanderbilt Divinity School

Segun Idowu
Boston Police Camera Action Team


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