Washington, DC The Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) expressed disappointment that once again President Bush passed on the historic opportunity to nominate a Latino to fill the vacant seat on the Supreme Court. On several occasions, the CHC called on President Bush to nominate a qualified Latino dedicated to equality and a judicial system that is fair to the Latino community. The President has announced his pick for the highest court would be White House counsel, Harriet Miers.
“Given the size of the Hispanic community in the United States, the underrepresentation of Hispanics in the judiciary and the abundance of Hispanics qualified for appointment, it is difficult to comprehend the President’s decision other than in the harsh light of political factors trumping all other considerations,” said Congressman Charlie Gonzalez.
“Yet again, President Bush has missed a very historic opportunity to appoint a qualified Hispanic to the Supreme Court,” said Congresswoman Linda Sánchez, vice-chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’ Civil Rights Task Force.
The CHC will monitor the confirmation hearing and conduct its own research in order to determine whether Ms. Meirs’ qualifications correspond with those areas of concern to the CHC. The CHC will examine Ms. Miers’ record of commitment to equal justice and right of access to the courts, her support for Congress’ constitutional authority to pass civil rights legislation, and her efforts in support of protecting employment, immigrant and voting rights, as well as educational and political access for all Americans.
Past Supreme Court rulings on the rights of immigrant workers, voting rights, affirmative action policies at colleges and universities, and bilingual education have had long-lasting and far-reaching affects on the lives of Latino families.