After Republicans and seven Democratic defectors teamed up to sink the president’s pick to head the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division last week, some of the president’s allies are redoubling their efforts to claim a scalp of their own: Michael P. Boggs, a nominee for the District Court bench in Georgia.
The scorched-earth campaign led by groups such as the Fraternal Order of Police against Debo P. Adegbile came down to a visceral attack over his participation in the legal defense of convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal. Boggs’ opponents are painting him in stark terms as well.
“Let’s put it this way, we have no choice but to follow this pattern; it looks like this is the way to go,” said Rep. David Scott, D-Ga., Boggs’ chief opponent. “… We hope to have a winning hand as well.”
On Monday, Scott teamed up with NARAL Pro-Choice America and sent an email to its 500,000 members urging them to call their senators and oppose the Boggs nomination.
“I’m as surprised and outraged as you are to be fighting an anti-civil rights, anti-choice, anti-marriage equality nominee put forward by Obama’s White House to serve on the federal bench in my home state in Georgia,” Scott wrote. “… We can turn this train around, but the Senate needs to know that the American people aren’t willing to put the future of our courts in the hands of someone whose values should have been left behind in the 1950s.”
Unlike with Adegbile, who was done in by just seven Democratic votes, in the Boggs case opponents will need to either convince Senate Democratic leaders to put the nomination on ice, convince the vast majority of Democrats to oppose him or convince the president to withdraw the pick. That’s because Boggs has the blessing of his home-state senators, Republicans Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss.
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