Sent to DMR today.
For Grassley, Women Never Good Enough
When men move quickly up the ladder we admire them as high fliers but women always need to be twice as good. At Senate Judiciary hearings recently, Grassley questioned the credentials and experience of four women President Obama nominated to the federal courts. Our judiciary is struggling with its caseload as positions go unfilled waiting for Senate confirmation. Women seem to take longer than men to get through the process, particularly when the President and the majority of the Senate are from different parties. Iowans will remember that our own Bonnie Campbell never received a confirmation vote to serve on the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. The only woman to ever serve on that court out of 61 judges, Judge Diana Murphy, was also dismissed by some, including the ABA, as less qualified because she came to legal practice later in life and had fewer years of legal service. She has served with distinction. What is really going on is that Grassley does not like the politics of these women, whom he suspects of being too liberal for his taste. But it more acceptable to question their credentials, and sadly, women’s credentials just never seem to be good enough.
Sally J. Kenney, a native Iowan, is a professor of political science at Tulane University and the Newcomb College Endowed Chair. She is an expert on judicial selection and finishing a book on Gender and Judging.