News Column

LULAC Urges Senate to Confirm Miguel Estrada

February 11, 2003

WASHINGTON, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), this country's oldest and largest Hispanic membership organization, today called upon the U.S. Senate to confirm Miguel Estrada to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. Citing the nominee's outstanding experience and strong bi-partisan support from those who have worked with him throughout his career, LULAC urged Senators to set partisan politics aside and confirm Estrada without further delay.

Miguel Estrada is an exceptionally well-qualified candidate to the D.C. Circuit. He graduated magna cum laude from Columbia University and magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He clerked for Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy - one of the more moderate Republican appointees who continues to be Estrada's mentor. He has argued fifteen cases before the Supreme Court and received a unanimous "well qualified" rating from the American Bar Association - the organization's highest possible evaluation.

"Miguel Estrada is considered by all who have worked with him to be a brilliant attorney who has demonstrated the ability to set aside any personal beliefs he may have and effectively argue cases based on the U.S. constitution and the law," stated LULAC National President Hector Flores. "Perhaps the most compelling praise in support of Mr. Estrada's nomination has come from Democratic political appointees who worked with him in the Clinton Administration."

In fact, no fewer than five high ranking Clinton appointees who worked closely with Estrada have praised him for his brilliance, compassion, fairness and respect for precedent. "With strong bi-partisan support from the people who have worked with him and know him best," stated Flores, "voting to confirm Miguel Estrada to the D.C. Circuit should be an easy decision."

Any attorney who has argued 15 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court has an extensive legal track record that can be analyzed for accuracy, quality, judicial temperament and bias. Yet, incredibly, Mr. Estrada's detractors claim that his legal record is too thin for them to make an informed decision on his nomination.

"This claim underscores the opposition's biggest problem," stated Flores. "There is nothing in Miguel Estrada's extensive record that would lead a reasonable person to conclude anything other than this nominee is an exceptionally well-qualified, highly principled attorney, who will make a fine judge on the D.C. Circuit."

LULAC strongly believes that our nation's federal judges should reflect the diversity of the communities they preside over. Hispanics, however, remain severely underrepresented in the judiciary comprising only 3.8 percent of federal judges while making up 14 percent of the U.S. population.

Source: LULAC

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