The Right’s Reaction to Biden’s SCOTUS Pick Ketanji Brown Jackson

President Joe Biden fulfilled his promise to nominate a Black woman to the Supreme Court Friday with the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. Far-right and right-wing commentators either largely ignored the nomination, being much too busy critiquing Biden for his handling of the Russia-Ukraine war, or they used it as yet another opportunity to lob insults at Biden and his pick.

Carrie Severino, president of the right-wing Judicial Crisis Network, called Jackson “a politician in robes,” and accused Biden of reneging on his promise of unity to instead “deliver radical extremism.”

“With the nomination of Jackson today, Biden continues to placate his liberal dark money friends,” Severino alleged, claiming Biden nominated Jackson at the behest of Arabella Advisors. (This was a critique taken up by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell as well.) As noted by Robert McGuire, the research director of Citizens for Ethics, “If you want to make the case against dark money in SCOTUS nominations, you might not want to be the head of a dark money group.”

In an ad released on Twitter, Judicial Crisis Network also suggested that it was somehow inappropriate to nominate a Supreme Court judge “in the middle of an international crisis.”

Far-right commentator Jack Posobiec, who was mainly preoccupied with criticizing Biden’s handling of the Russia-Ukraine crisis, took a minute of his time to accuse Biden—who said he would announce the nominee before the end of February—of being sneaky. “The WH strategy is to breeze a Supreme Court nominee right through during lots of distractions. No one will have time to scrutinize them,” Posobiec wrote. He added, “It also shows their focus is not Ukraine.”

Nick Adams, a right-wing author who brags that he’s Trump endorsed, alleged that Jackson was a “communist.”

“Joe Biden is going to try to push through a communist Supreme Court Justice while there’s a war going on in Europe,” he wrote on Twitter.

Trump’s Save America PAC took the opportunity to try to raise money, sending a text to supporters that made use of Trump’s trademark caps lock style of writing: “BIDEN ANNOUNCED HIS RADICAL SUPREME COURT NOMINEE! Pres Trump activated an EMERGENCY 6X-IMPACT to FIGHT BACK.”

The anti-choice Susan B. Anthony List attacked Brown for being supported by pro-choice groups and specifically signaled out an amicus brief Jackson co-authored supporting a Massachusetts law that prevented anti-abortion activists from harassing women entering abortion facilities by creating a floating “buffer zone.”

“Ketanji Brown Jackson is backed by many of America’s most radical pro-abortion groups,” SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser said in a statement. “She is on record opposing the free speech rights of pro-life advocates pleading to save lives outside abortion centers and supporting the false claim that abortion is ‘health care.’ We have no doubt she will work with the most pro-abortion administration in history to enshrine abortion on demand nationwide in the law.”

Criticism of Biden’s SCOTUS nominee was launched before he had even named Jackson. Two days before the announcement, longtime religious-right activist Richard Land criticized Biden for pledging to nominate a Black woman, saying that in doing so, Biden was “draining the pool” of qualified candidates “down to a foot wash,” Right Wing Watch reported.

With some notable exceptions, right-wing commentators on Friday largely avoided repeating the racist and sexist attacks they had lobbed at Kamala Harris when she was named Biden’s running mate and instead focused their ire on Biden.

Tom Fitton, the buff face of the right-wing messaging shop Judicial Watch, said Thursday that Biden’s Supreme Court search was “discriminatory,” adding, “The Left would like you to believe that only ‘white males’ are harmed. but Biden is also barring black males, white females, Hispanic females, Asian males, etc. from his race and sex quota scheme.”

Ed Martin, president of Phyllis Schlafly Eagles and an early activist with the so-called Stop the Steal campaign, said Thursday that Biden is “a racist” for pledging to nominate a Black woman.