Cornyn Partners with Democrats to Defeat Republicans on Court Nominee

Cornyn Partners with Democrats to Defeat Republicans on Court Nominee

In the face of opposition from a majority of Republicans, Texas Sen. John Cornyn partnered with Democrats yesterday to confirm a judicial nominee with a checkered past. Mark Bennett was confirmed to the San Francisco-based Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals with 27 members of the 51-member Senate Republican Caucus voting against him. Opposition to Bennett’s confirmation was led by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who grilled him for liberal positions he took while serving as Hawaii’s Attorney General. “[Bennett] was an aggressive advocate, as attorney general, for gay marriage. He was an aggressive advocate demonstrating hostility to the First Amendment and political speech,” said Cruz in a Senate Judiciary hearing. “Most significantly, he has been an aggressive advocate for undermining the Second Amendment.” As Hawaii’s attorney general, Bennett signed on to amicus briefs opposing conservative outcomes in two critical cases, DC v. Heller and Citizens United v. FEC. In Heller , Bennett opposed the individual right to keep and bear arms. Efforts to uphold gun rights were led in part by Cruz who was serving at the time as Texas’ Solicitor General. In contrast to Bennett, who argued in favor of Washington DC’s ban on handguns, Cruz worked with then-Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott to uphold the Constitution. “Taking the position in the Heller case that the Second Amendment protects no individual right to bear arms whatsoever—In my judgement that is an extreme position,” said Cruz . “It is grossly inconsistent with the text and original understanding of the Second […]

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