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STATEMENT: CAP’s Maggie Jo Buchanan Praises Senate Confirmation of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson

Washington, D.C. — Today, the Senate voted to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. The vote follows last week’s confirmation of three of President Joe Biden’s nominees for federal district court seats, including the first Muslim to serve on the federal bench. In response, Maggie Jo Buchanan, director of Legal Progress at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson brings an exemplary record of accomplishment to the D.C. Circuit, including her service as a federal district court judge and as a federal public defender. It is fitting that she is the first of President Biden’s nominees for an appellate seat to be confirmed. Not only is Judge Jackson eminently qualified, but her background also reflects the administration’s commitment to diversifying the bench in all senses of the word and supporting equal justice for all Americans.

Still, there is much work to be done. Only a little more than one-third of active appellate judges are women, and fewer than one-quarter are people of color. And judges who are former corporate attorneys and prosecutors continue to far outnumber those from public defense, legal aid, and civil rights backgrounds. The Senate should continue to move swiftly to improve the diversity of the judiciary and therefore, the quality of its decision-making.

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at  or 202-478-6327.