NLG Issues Position Paper Exploring Qualifications for Judicial Nominee

The National Lawyers Guild has issued a position paper exploring the proper qualifications for a judicial nominee, asserting that the institution of the Court itself cannot survive the latest right-wing ideology. The paper urges the left to demand the Justice it wants—not the Justice it thinks Republicans might approve.

“The left must not be timid in demanding a Justice with our vision of the law. It should not be content with, or even credit, superficial characteristics; and we should not be afraid to demand an ideological framework that allows for the kind of judicial interpretation the people need. Seventy-three years ago, progressive attorneys formed the National Lawyers Guild, in part to advocate for the proposition 'that human rights shall be regarded as more sacred than property interests,’ in the words of the organization’s constitution. As the Guild constitution provides: 'Our aim is to bring together all those who regard adjustments to new conditions as more important than the veneration of precedent; who recognize the importance of safeguarding and extending the rights of workers, women, farmers, and minority groups upon whom the welfare of the entire nation depends; who seek actively to eliminate racism; who work to maintain and protect our civil rights and liberties in the face of persistent attacks upon them; and who look upon the law as an instrument for the protection of the people, rather than for their repression.’ That is the outlook of someone qualified to be on the United States Supreme Court."

The position paper was written by Professor Zachary Wolfe, an attorney and chair of the Amicus Curiae Committee of the National Lawyers Guild, as well as an Assistant Professor and Deputy Director of First Year Writing at The George Washington University in Washington, DC.