Ketanji Brown Jackson Makes History as the First Black Woman Justice to be Confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court

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Image: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images.

Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Thursday, becoming the first Black woman justice on the Supreme Court in the nation’s history.

Jackson will assume her duties as the newest justice of the Supreme Court when Justice Stephen Breyer’s retirement becomes official in October.

Vice President Kamala Harris presided over the proceedings and members of the Congressional Black Caucus gathered on the Senate floor to honor the significant moment, the New York Times reported.

Jackson along with President Joe Biden, who promised to nominate a Black woman to the court watched the vote from the Roosevelt Room in the White House

By a vote of 53-47, Jackson received support and votes from Republican Senators Mitt Romney of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.  

As EBONY previously reported, Jackson gained the support of three Republican Senators. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said decried the “corrosive politicization of the review process for Supreme Court nominees, which, on both sides of the aisle, is growing worse and more detached from reality by the year.” Sen. Mitt Romney said Jackson was “a well-qualified jurist and a person of honor.” Sen. Susan Collins said that although she may not agree with all of Jackson’s views, she found her to be enormously well qualified for the job.

“Judge Jackson’s confirmation will be a glass-shattering achievement for America,” said Senator Dick Durbin the Committee of the Judiciary.

“She’s made it very clear that when it comes to applying the law to the facts, she does it with evenhandedness—so much so that she’s respected by both sides of the table, the prosecutors’ side of the table and the defense side of the table,” he added. “That takes some doing, but she’s achieved it.…She’s going to make history if we give her this confirmation vote.”

Jackson endured a contentious confirmation process where Republican Senators attempted to discredit her and derail the confirmation process. While her appointment will not change the current 6 to 3 conservative balance on the Supreme Court, Jackson’s nomination ushers in a new era of justices and could bolster the Democrat’s chances in the mid-term elections.

“This is a wonderful day, a joyous day, an inspiring day for the Senate, for the Supreme Court, and for the United States of America,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Thursday, describing Jackson as “brilliant,” “beloved,” and saying she “belongs” on the Supreme Court.

Derrick Johnson, NAACP President celebrated Jackson’s historic nomination in a statement.

“Today’s vote to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court is of enormous consequence to our nation and to history,” his statement read. 

“After weeks and weeks of racist, misogynistic, and stomach-churning attacks, we cannot wait to finally call her Justice Jackson,” Johnson said.

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