Poll: Americans find Black women nominees more qualified than Amy Coney Barrett for the Supreme Court

by Ezekiel J. Walker
supreme court
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The Supreme Court is about to look 1/9th different. And everybody isn’t feeling it.

A new Yahoo News!/ YouGov poll of 1,628 U.S. adults discovered that a clear majority of those polled (55 percent) say nominating a Black woman is either “not very” (19 percent) or “not at all” (36 percent) important to them.

The hate is real. Just 23 percent say it is “very important.”  These polled individuals indicate just how much identity politics matters when there is a Black nominee.

Supreme Court has been a “Good Ol’ Boys” Club

Within the Supreme Court and like most major corporations and industries, there have always been qualified Black candidates. Yet being selected for a job, even as high as the Supreme Court, is rarely based on mere qualifications.

Race matters in America. For better and oftentimes worse.

Yet, despite the polarized reactions between Republicans and Democrats, the poll actually found that Americans in general believe some of Biden’s potential Black women nominees for the Supreme Court are more qualified than Justice Amy Coney Barrett, a Trump-appointee who replaced Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

For instance, across all Americans polled, 67% said Amy Coney Barrett was “somewhat qualified” or “very qualified.” Meanwhile, J. Michelle Childs, a potential Black nominee, was found qualified by 70% of those polled. Next, 69% polled found Ketanji Brown-Jackson qualified, and 65% found Leondra Kruger qualified.

Still, there’s been pushback at the idea of intentionally narrowing the selection process to Black women.

After S.C. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died in 2020, Pres. Trump said, “I will be putting forth a nominee next week. It will be a woman.” Funny there wasn’t as much hoopla for Amy. She was hurriedly pushed through.

‘I like beer.’

The vast majority of those same Americans polled — and a smaller but still significant majority of Republicans — agree that all three of the Black women reportedly at the top of Biden’s shortlist are indeed qualified.

Black women are qualified. And they know it. Yet these Supreme Court nominees can expect consistent attacks as S.C. Justice Sonya Sotomayor knows all too well.

Yet as Biden muddles over his decision, for some reason he’s also leaning on the party that denigrated the very announcement of a Black woman.

Per NPR, Biden recently met with Republican Chuck Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, in the Oval Office. Biden and White House officials have continued to have conversations with lawmakers from both parties this week.

Just what Biden voters wanted, Republican opinions.

Qualified does not equate to likeability

“I think whomever I pick will get a vote from the Republicans,” Biden said. “I’m not looking to make an ideological choice. I’m looking for someone to replace Judge Breyer with the same kind of capacity Judge Breyer had: with an open mind.”

Yet for Republicans, regardless of who is chosen, she’s already been maligned and we don’t even know her name yet.

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