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SPLC joins Alabama civil rights groups in urging Sens. Jones and Shelby to vote against Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination

The SPLC is among 10 Alabama civil rights organizations that strongly urged U.S. Sens. Richard Shelby and Doug Jones today to vote against the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Editor’s note: On Sept. 28, 2018, Sen. Doug Jones announced he would vote against the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh. Sen. Richard Shelby has decided to vote for Kavanaugh, according to a statement from the Alabama Republican Party.

“Judge Kavanaugh’s troubling record on protecting the rights of the most vulnerable in our society convinces us that he is not suited for a lifetime appointment to the court,” the civil rights groups explained in letters addressed separately to each senator from Alabama. “Our concerns about him have been exacerbated by his seeming lack of candor during the confirmation process.”

In the letters, the groups highlighted Kavanaugh’s hard-line opposition to affirmative action, his troubling record on matters of criminal justice, and his repeated votes “to uphold the interests of the wealthy and powerful and large corporations at the expense of workers, consumers, and communities of color.”

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday delayed its vote on Kavanaugh’s appointment until next week, as a handful of moderate senators continued to deliberate privately over whether to support him.

“When Robert Bork, an ideologue like Brett Kavanaugh, was nominated to the Supreme Court, Alabama’s legendary Sen. Howell Heflin exercised great wisdom by voting against him,” said Richard Cohen, president of the SPLC. “We hope that Sens. Shelby and Jones follow Sen. Heflin’s example by voting against Kavanaugh, because the rights that the people of our state hold dear hang in the balance.”

Benard Simelton, president of the Alabama State Conference of the NAACP, said: “The Alabama NAACP stands strongly against the Kavanaugh nomination. From Selma to Shelby County, Alabama is ground zero for voting rights. Confirming Brett Kavanaugh could finish off the Voting Rights Act. A vote for Kavanaugh is a vote against democracy,”

In addition to the SPLC and the Alabama NAACP, the other organizations that signed the letters are the Greater Birmingham Ministries, the Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice, the Alabama affiliate of the National Employment Lawyers Association, the Central Alabama Fair Housing Center, the Fair Housing Center of North Alabama, the Mobile Fair Housing Center, Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates, and URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity.

Read our letter to Sen. Jones.
Read our letter to Sen. Shelby.