CBS Goes Gaga for Jackson, Demand GOP Do ‘Soul-Searching’ After ‘Wasted’ Hearings

CBS and NBC both celebrated their liberal tendencies and gush Thursday after her Senate confirmation vote. The CBS crew savored Ketanji brown Jackson as someone they could admire beyond ideology, while pointing out that Republicans are guilty of having a racist agenda. “wasted” Her confirmation hearings, and the suggested senators she does “soul-searching.”

Longtime legal correspondent Jan Crawford got the festivities going when she expressed hope that, while Jackson won’t formally change the Court’s ideological tilt, her life “experiences” could convince “other justices to rethink positions or — or opinions.”



The Embattled CBS Evening News anchor Norah O’Donnell reflected on the hearings and, in noting the vote totals for Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh, and Clarence Thomas, she touted how Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) used statements in support of Jackson to decry “how corrosive the process has become.”

Congressional correspondent Nikole Killion acknowledged Murkowski’s laments as a way of saying Jackson’s ordeal illustrated how senators “acknowledge that the process is broken and there is still a lot of bad blood from the hearings with Justice Kavanaugh, from the rapid hearings with Justice Amy Coney Barrett and then from the questioning that we saw with Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, which many…felt was beyond the pale.”

“So, certainly going forward, senators of both parties will have to do some soul-searching about how they want to conduct this process going forward,”Killion was added. Seeing as how its in reference to Jackson, it’s clear which party they’re referring to.

Even though Jen Psaki was under intense questioning, Weijia Jiang, a senior White House correspondent, was enthusiastic about Team Biden. “a really substantial victory for the President, just when he needs it most” given his struggling poll numbers on inflation and foreign crises because a “concerted effort…to celebrate…his domestic policy wins” hasn’t “penetrate[d].”

O’Donnell and chief Washington correspondent Major Garrett then had a history lesson that, to their credit, included then-Senator Biden’s treatment of the late Robert Bork. When it came to Jackson’s hearings, however, Garrett dismissed questions about her sentencing record on child sex predators as a midterms ploy and “a sure-fire headline” for “Republican-inspired media” (click “expand”):

O’DONNELL: [T]he confirmation process is only about their qualifications —


O’DONNELL: — their temperament, and all of that, but they have become increasingly partisan. Many people say they started when Joe Biden was actually chairman of the Judiciary Committee and Robert — a guy named Robert Bork —


O’DONNELL: — was “borked” as that verb has become. However, what was actually revealed in the confirmation hearings were the battle lines that would be drawn for the next election. 

GARRETT: That’s right. So, Republicans used the confirmation process not so much to dissect Judge Jackson’s approach to the Constitution or her record judicially — there was a little bit of that — but there was much more emphasis on things like what was your sentencing record dealing with child pornography cases, always a sure-fire headline in some quarters of Republican-inspired media. This is part of the bridge to softening crime which will be a bigger metric for Republicans during midterm elections. So historically, it was advice and consent. It has evolved into advise and discontent. This is because the majority is trying to stop the president’s nomination. Everyone has a lot of muscle memory about this. As you said, Republicans can go all the way about to Robert Bork, Democrats will say what about Merrick Garland and then they’ll say what about Brett Kavanaugh, and they’ll say what about — and everyone has a what about in the Supreme Court process because it’s now more commonly filtered through the politics of primaries, nominating, and presidencies, which is a big change from 20 to 25 years ago when that wasn’t the case. It was not as clear as it is now that Supreme Court decisions are filtered through nominating and primary processes.

Crawford and O’Donnell kept on this thread as, after Crawford noted that hearings are “an important public service” to hear and see justices, the latter lamented: “[W]As that public service, and that chance wasted by many senators who spoke about whether she…coddled…pedophiles…as opposed larger issues about constitutional questions[?]”

Crawford replied it was a byproduct of “both sides” having altered the Supreme Court nominee process to which Garrett surmised the Ginsberg rule came out of the openness Bork displayed.

Garrett added an analogy to the discussion, saying supporters of nominee come to hearings with “pillows” while “[t]he side against them brings straight razors.”

Once the final vote was announced, O’Donnell interjected amid raucous applause in the Senate: 

April 7, 2022 at 2:28, the United States Senate approves the appointment of the first Black woman to the top court. It is an historic moment, one that will be remembered for the country, regardless of your political affiliation.

Killion called the number shortly thereafter “a joyous and historic moment,”That’s what I call “swooning.” “it is fitting to know that Vice President Kamala Harris….presided over this vote.”

Killion continued the fawning, borrowing a page from O’Donnell with the “no matter your politics” line (click “expand”):

KILLION: [T]Many Black women have the hope that the nomination will bring about the opening of doors that Justice Jackson (soon to be) won’t be just the first judge but the most important. So, the goal is to fill up the pipeline within federal judiciary where only 2% of judges are African-American. So, I think it’s just important to note that history…[A]No matter what your politics are, it is an important fact that a Black woman was confirmed to the Supreme Court’s 233-year-old history. Perhaps Judge Jackson’s most remarkable testimony is the one that she shared about the trajectory. It was about how her parents were educated in segregated schools. Then, after graduating from Harvard, Jackson talked about being able serve as a district judge, a circuit court member, and then finally ascending to the top court. That trajectory was amazing to her. Again, it’s not about Judge Jackson. This story is also about young Black girls. Young girls across this country are opening more doors for opportunity regardless of your race, creed, color, or gender. 

O’DONNELL: Well said, Nikole Killion. And Judge Jackson said in those Senate hearings, “I hope to inspire people to try to follow this path” — the path she took as she said she loves this country and she loves the law.

You can view the CBS transcript of April 7th by clicking here

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