Roger Wicker on SuperTalk Mississippi

Republican Senator Says Black Woman SCOTUS Nominee Will Be ‘Beneficiary’ of Affirmative Action

President Joe Biden has yet to name a replacement for retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, but has made it clear that he plans to honor his campaign promise to nominate the first Black woman to the highest court in the land. And while Biden is still considering candidates, Republican senators are already campaigning against the nominee. Chief among them is Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker, who discussed his opposition to a Black woman on the Supreme Court in an interview on the Paul Gallo Show.

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“The irony is that the Supreme Court is at the very time hearing cases about this sort of affirmative racial discrimination while adding someone who is the beneficiary of this sort of quota,” said Wicker, referring to an upcoming U.S. Supreme Court case that challenges the use of Affirmative Action in college admissions. Given the 6-3 conservative majority on the court, SCOTUS is likely to undo the decades-long practices that helps marginalized groups achieve equity in schools and workplaces.

“The majority of the court may be saying writ large that it’s unconstitutional. We’ll see how that irony works out,” said Wicker. Wicker continued to assail the as-yet-unnamed nominee, adding “We’re going to go from a nice, stately liberal to someone who’s probably more in the style of Sonia Sotomayor,… I hope it’s at least someone who will at least not misrepresent the facts. I think they will misinterpret the law.”

Wicker added that the nominee should not expect to get any votes from the Republican senators, saying “I guarantee you this, Paul, this new justice will probably not get a single Republican vote, but we will not treat her like the Democrats did Brett Kavanaugh. It was one of the most disgraceful, shameful things and completely untruthful things that the Democratic Judiciary majority has ever, ever done.”

Wicker is referring of course to the credible allegations of sexual misconduct against Justice Brett Kavanaugh, that did not deter Republicans from voting him onto the court. In response, White House spokesman Andrew Bates said the President’s promise to nominate and confirm a Black woman to the Supreme Court “is in line with the best traditions of both parties and our nation.”

“What’s more, when the previous president followed through on his own promise to place a woman on the Supreme Court, Senator Wicker said, ‘I have five granddaughters, the oldest one is 10. I think Justice Amy Coney Barrett will prove to be an inspiration to these five granddaughters and to my grown daughters,'” adding “We hope Senator Wicker will give President Biden’s nominee the same consideration he gave to then-Judge Barrett.”

Wicker’s assumption about Biden’s SCOTUS pick is the first in what will surely be a long racist campaign from Republicans to derail and deny a Supreme Court seat to a Black woman. Clearly they are already using Affirmative Action to argue against the nominee. Many took to social media to call out the explicit racism of Wicker’s comments:

(via Mississippi Free Press, image: screencap)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.