One of President Joe Biden’s nominees to be a federal judge has argued that photo ID and proof of citizenship are really ways to suppress voters. Nancy Gbana Abudu, the deputy legal director at the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), is a left-wing activist who has ties with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). In December, she was chosen by the president to serve on the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.
The 11th Circuit includes parts of Georgia, Florida, and Alabama. The vacancy that Abudu is set to fill came up due to the retirement of Judge Beverly B. Martin, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama.
Abudu previously worked for the ACLU from 2005 to 2019. She was an 11th Circuit Court staff attorney from 2002 to 2004. According to a White House memo, she was on the slate of the twelfth round of judicial nominees along with Judge J. Michelle Childs.
President Biden has nominated 75 judges in 2021. And according to the recent White House memo, he believes that his nominees reflect the diversity that he promised. Biden said that Abudu would be the first African-American woman judge to have ever held court in the Eleventh Circuit.
The Daily Wire found an interview that Abudu did in 2011 where she said that 95% of her work with the ACLU involved voting rights. In the interview, she said that photo IDs and proof of citizenship are indicative of “voter suppression.” These safeguards have been long-established requirements to vote in American elections. We’ve been over this before. Photo IDs are an important part of everyday life, and asking for them at the time of voting is not a form of suppression.
Abudu noted that her biggest concern as an ACLU attorney regarding voter repression was when states passed laws requiring voters to have photo IDs. She lashed out at South Carolina for not allowing students to show campus IDs to vote and she said it was unduly “restrictive.”
Since that interview in 2011, Abudu has continued to argue that some voting requirements are discriminatory. This past August, she challenged the Senate to pass the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act – H.R. 4. This bill was written to protect the future of American democracy.
Abudu wrote, “As HR 4 moves to the Senate, some senators have already committed to doing everything in their power to oppose the bill – up to and including leveraging a legislative tool popular with pro-Jim Crow senators of the past – to prevent its passage and to further erode the fundamental right to vote.”
Biden’s new nominee to the Circuit Court wrote in March of 2021 that efforts by lawmakers to protect election security were similar to efforts to suppress black voters in the 1960s. Abudu went after Georgia for their “Election Integrity Act of 2021.” This mandates that there be voter ID for mail-in ballots and stops absentee ballot acceptance within 11 days of an election. It also restricts third parties from handing out gifts to voters at polling places.
The worst part about this nominee is how she lines up with the Biden administration’s opposition to election security measures. When GOP Gov. Brian Kemp signed the Georgia bill, the president referred to it as “Jim Crow in the 21st century.” Abudu reiterated the president’s sentiment when she referenced “Jim Crow” in a June 2020 article. She said that American is a “separate and unequal society.” And she believes that the criminal justice system “ruins people’s lives forever.”
But instead of being restrictive, voter turnout in the state of Georgia went up.
Biden has nominated others who some say operate in the “progressive fringes” of their fields. Let’s hope that we can reverse this course with the next presidential election.