Senate Republicans voted Monday night to advance the nomination of Allison Jones Rushing, yet another of President Donald Trump’s judicial nominees who is troubling for a number of reasons.
Rushing worked for Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian organization that has been classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. She has argued that there were “moral and practical” reasons for banning same-sex marriage.
But it’s her age that may be most notable: She is 37. If she gets confirmed this week, as expected, she will be the youngest federal judge in the country. She has practiced law for only nine years, and her career has focused on defending corporations. She has tried just four cases to verdict or judgment.
Long after this week’s Senate vote, after Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) are gone, after the 2020 presidential election that the media is so focused on right now, Rushing will be on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit interpreting statutes and making consequential decisions that affect millions of Americans.
With little fanfare, Republicans advanced her nomination Monday on a party-line vote of 52-43. Her final confirmation vote is expected Tuesday.
Rushing, who is a partner at the D.C.-based law firm Williams & Connolly, is not the only exceptionally young judicial nominee getting a Senate vote this week. McConnell has teed up votes for U.S. circuit court nominees Eric Murphy and Chad Readler, who are 40 and 46, respectively.
All three have the ideological bent that Trump is looking for in his court picks. Murphy, the solicitor general of Ohio, has fought to make it easier to disenfranchise voters, argued against marriage equality in the landmark 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges case before the Supreme Court and argued against reproductive rights. Readler, who is Trump’s acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s civil division, filed a brief in favor of striking down the Affordable Care Act, defended efforts to weaken voting rights and defended Trump’s ban on transgender people serving in the military.
All three are members of the conservative Federalist Society, which has been driving Trump’s judicial selection process and funneling anti-abortion and anti-LGBTQ nominees to the White House.