pResident Joe Biden boasted that Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson was “brighter than the rest” of her colleagues during a speech Saturday, just days after she issued her third majority opinion.
Biden made the comments during his commencement speech at Howard University on Saturday, where he talked about his first-term accomplishments, condemned his political enemies and implored students to stay politically engaged. Jackson was confirmed by the Senate to the nation’s highest bench last April with a slim bipartisan majority. Her confirmation was historic, being the first black woman to serve on the Court.
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“With your voices and votes, I was able to fulfill my commitment to put the first black woman on the Supreme Court of the United States of America. And, by the way, she is brighter than the rest. She is a brilliant woman,” she said. Biden said about Jackson. “Thanks to you. You showed up. You showed up when the votes were counted.”
“Because of you, more black women have been appointed to federal appeals courts than under any other president in American history combined,” she continued, prompting applause from students at the historically black university.
Saturday’s speech served as a de facto campaign address, and Biden touched on the issues of significant importance to this particular voting bloc, including climate change and student loan forgiveness. He also gave a shout-out to Vice President Kamala Harris, an alumna of Howard’s, who he said is “sending her love.”
Jackson has received glowing reviews from his Supreme Court colleagues since joining the bench. Judge Brett Kavanaugh noted this during an event at the University of Notre Dame in January.
“She’s fully prepared, well prepared,” Kavanaugh said of Jackson. “[She’s] off to a great start.”
“There are great relationships between the nine judges, both personally and professionally,” he added. “We just have hard cases, and some we disagree on. I think this is more nuanced than it’s sometimes portrayed.”
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That readiness was on full display Thursday, when Jackson wrote his third majority opinion since joining the high court for the 7-2 decision in favor of a transgender immigrant fighting deportation from the United States.
In Santos-Zacaria v. Garland, the high court ruled that the requirement that noncitizens contesting deportation must first exhaust all administrative remedies is not jurisdictional, opening the way for Leon Santos-Zacaria, 33 years old, who is transgender and passes in front. Estrella, to appeal deportation from the US.