We have five judicial nominees today: one
for the Ninth Circuit, two for the district court in Michigan, and two for the
Claims Court. We also have an executive nominee for the Assistant Attorney
General for the Antitrust Division.
Judge Koh is a federal district court
judge in California and is nominated for the Ninth Circuit. She’s well known
for her opinions in high-profile cases involving tech companies, antitrust and
data privacy. She has also had major opinions bearing on religious liberty and
constitutional rights. I hope we’ll be able to discuss some of those more in
depth today, and also hear more about Judge Koh’s judicial philosophy.
Some of this Administration’s nominees
have been a bit cagey about how they view constitutional and statutory interpretation.
Given her time on the bench, I think Judge Koh will be able to speak about her
judicial philosophy more fully.
The Michigan nominees are both sitting
judges, which is good. But their prior experience is also pretty similar:
plaintiff lawyers with long histories of donating to Democrats.
While there’s nothing wrong with a
plaintiff lawyer or donating to a Democrat, we should make sure that these
nominees are willing to be even-handed on the federal bench.
As to the Claims nominees, Mr. Bonilla
seems experienced before this specialized court, and Ms. Lerner is someone my
staff has worked with well over the years from her time as Special Counsel in
the Office of Special Counsel.
Mr. Kanter has been a forceful critic of
big tech companies. He also has a long history of advocating for more
aggressive enforcement of our antitrust laws. We had a good discussion about my
concerns about consolidation in the agriculture industry, and I hope we’ll have
a chance to continue those discussions today.