“NO” on Nomination of Wilhelmina Wright for US District Court for Minnesota

On Tuesday, the Senate is scheduled to vote on the nomination of Wilhelmina Wright for the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota.

Wright, who currently serves on Minnesota’s Supreme Court, has a troubling track record, which includes racially-charged accusations against President Ronald Reagan and statements indicating previous opposition to the constitutional understanding of property rights. Justice Wright once wrote in a law review that:

“White people are running and hiding.  Their mad scramble is aided by a Chief Justice [Justice Rehnquist] who owned racially restrictive property and a Presidential administration [President Reagan] that believes bigotry, poverty, and poor educational opportunities for most public school students are the unavoidable fruits of a “thriving” free market economy.”

And later in the same review, she wrote “the sanctity of property and the belief in the hierarchy of races” undergirds racism in America. According to a recent Daily Signal article, when questioned by the Senate Judiciary Committee about these statements, she qualified them by saying “the writing was ‘inartful’ and made without ‘all of the training and experience that I have now.’” The fact that her nomination has been guided through the process by two liberal Democrats, Senators Al Franken (D-MN) 7% and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) 5%, should also raise concerns.  

Confirming Justice Wright to a lifetime appointment on the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota is also the wrong response to this President’s recent overreach. Heritage legal expert Hans von Spakovsky explains President Obama “will go down in history as one of the most lawless of American presidents, someone who – with the help of his political appointees – has ignored, changed, or bent the law and the Constitution on every occasion.”

Last week, the White House chief of staff declared that “We’ll do audacious executive action over the course of the rest of the year, I’m confident of that.”  Given the president’s most recent unilateral actions intended to arbitrarily increase immigration and undermine the Second Amendment, senators should take his promise seriously.

This was further explained in a recent Heritage Action memo, calling on Congress to stand up to the president:

“Repeated executive power grabs threaten to undo the system of checks and balances written into our Constitution. The president’s actions have not only marginalized the legislature, they have also begun eroding the independence of our nation’s judicial system by stacking the courts with liberal judges who interpret the Constitution to serve this president’s radical progressive agenda.

“Our system of government requires each branch to jealously guard its prerogatives, and President Obama routinely tramples over the legislature’s prerogatives. Senators should not stand by idly for the next 12 months. They must act to reassert their constitutional prerogatives.”

If Senate Republicans band together and block this nomination, it will be a strong first step on a long path towards the Congress reasserting their constitutional prerogatives and defending the rule of law.

Heritage Action opposes the nomination of Wilhelmina Wright and will include it as a key vote on our legislative scorecard. 

Heritage Action Scorecard
Heritage Action: Stop Confirming Obama’s Judicial Nominees (Jan. 11)
Politico: Conservatives: No more Obama nominees (Jan. 12)
Heritage Action’s Congressional Boarding Pass (Jan. 13)
Daily Signal: Obama Judicial Nominee Who Accused Reagan of ‘Bigotry’ Faces Confirmation Vote (Jan. 14)
 Heritage Action Memo: Fight Obama’s Overreach by Refusing to Confirm Nominees (Jan. 15)