Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is recommending that President Biden nominate to the federal bench two voting rights attorneys who were involved in some of the most pivotal voting rights cases in recent years.
“With the national focus on voting rights now, their elevation is timely, their perspective will be invaluable,” Schumer said Monday, as he announced the recommendations.
For a seat on Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which is based in New York, Schumer is recommending Myrna Perez, a top lawyer at New York University’s Brennan Center, which works on voting rights and criminal justice issues. Perez worked on the blockbuster voter ID case in Texas, which culminated with the most conservative appellate court in the country ruling in 2016 that the requirement was discriminatory towards minority voters.
More recently, she was also involved in the litigation over the end-run Florida’s legislature did around the restoration of ex-felons’ voting rights approved by Florida’s voters in 2018. As Brennan Center’s director of voting rights and election programs, she has had her hand in several other voting rights cases, and if confirmed, Perez would be the only Latina to serving on the 2nd Circuit, according to the AP.
Schumer is also recommending for the U.S. District Court in Manhattan Dale Ho, who is the head of ACLU’s Voting Rights Project. Ho spearheaded the successful legal challenge to the Trump’s administration’s census citizenship question and twice argued census cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. He also led the charge to defeat the Kansas proof of citizenship requirement for voter registration that had been championed by the former Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
Schumer’s recommendations of Ho and Perez were first reported by the AP.
Home state senators wield major influence over who a president — and particularly a president from their own party — nominates to the judiciary.
Update: This story has been updated to include floor remarks from Leader Schumer announcing the recommendations.