Nancy Abudu, an attorney for a prominent legal advocacy group, will become the first Black woman to serve on the 11th Circuit of Appeals after withstanding opposition from Republicans and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin to clinch the U.S. Senate confirmation on Thursday.
Abudu, who was nominated by President Joe Biden, was confirmed on a 49-47 vote, with Sen. Manchin (D-W.VA) being the dissenting Democrat — as he has been in the recent past. Democrats currently hold a slim 51-49 majority in the Senate.
Republican senators, predictably, were all opposed to Abudu’s nomination.
Opposition to Abudu’s nomination goes back to a heated Senate committee hearing in April of last year about Southern Poverty Law Center including conservative groups on its list of hate groups published every year. Abudu countered that she was not involved with the list. As an attorney, she focused on racial justice and protecting voting rights.
Republican senators were unrelenting in their opposition to Abudu, as evidenced by some of the remarks made during Thursday’s confirmation.
“Today, I rise to oppose the nomination of Nancy Abudu,” said Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), a fierce critic of Abudu. “President Biden’s nominee and appointment to the U.S. Circuit judge for the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Now in a government as divided as ours at this time, we expect to have some controversial nominees that come before as at the judiciary committee. We expect debate, we do expect disagreement, but what we should never expect or tolerate is a nominee who has proven herself completely unfit for the role she’s asking,” she added.
The Atlanta-based 11th Circuit Court of Appeals reviews federal appeals from Alabama, Florida and Georgia and 11 active judges, mostly conservatives nominated by former President Trump. Abudu’s nomination will make her the 12th active judge.
More about Abudu’s historic nomination and background can be found here.
Blog dedicated to news and viewpoints from Black journalists who support, and inform, communities of color.
Original content, and curated articles, are posted and updated daily.