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Judicial nomination talk not just for lawyers

by UofL Today last modified Mar 29, 2011 01:10 PM

Former federal judge Nathaniel Jones will give a free, public talk March 30 at the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law.

Judicial nomination talk not just for lawyers

Nathaniel Jones

Jones will discuss the process of judicial nomination starting at 4 p.m. in the Allen Courtroom.

The topic is important for everyone — not just law students — because the U.S. system of government requires that people be informed participants, said Joe Tomain, visiting assistant professor of law, who has helped to coordinate the event.

“Our government only succeeds when there is an informed citizenry that holds the government accountable to the governed. Understanding the judiciary and ensuring the nomination of fair, capable and impartial judges is essential to our democracy,” he said.

According to Tomain, one concern about the judicial nomination process is that it can be politicized.

“While we expect judges to be impartial, federal judges must go through a political process to be seated,” he explained.

If the process becomes over-politicized, Tomain said, there is a risk to society that judges will not base their decisions on reason, as they should, but instead will base them on politics.

Jones was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 1979. Having retired from his post in 2002, he now serves on a committee that makes recommendations for potential judicial nominees for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. He also is the chief diversity and inclusion officer at the law firm, Blank Rome, LLP.

The talk is co-sponsored by the UofL law student chapters of the American Constitution Society and the Black Law Students Association, the Student Government Association and the Brandeis School of Law.

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