Trump's Judicial Nominee Shows No Knowledge of Basic Legal Terms in Hearing

Source CNN

Source CNN

Republican @SenJohnKennedy asks one of @realDonaldTrump's US District Judge nominees basic questions of law & he can't answer a single one. Here's a look at some of the questions Kennedy asked Petersen and how Petersen could have answered, according to definitions provided by the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University.

Video of the questioning by Sen. Judge Wayne R. Andersen, who was a federal judge in the northern district of IL for close to 20 years, explained that there was a continuing debate within the legal profession about the qualifications required of a trial judge.

He said that while trial experience was clearly beneficial, a nominee's personal qualities were more relevant.

The FEC has three Republican commissioners at any given time - and people are chosen for those jobs because they're expected to protect the GOP's interests.

Then Kennedy began to ask pointed questions about law. He could not define or identify the Daubert standard (a measure for determining the admissibility of expert testimony), a motion in limine (a request that certain evidence may not be introduced), the Younger abstention doctrine (the ruling that federal courts have strong obligations to hear cases in their jurisdictions) or the Pullman abstention doctrine (a principle that federal courts should give state courts the first chance to interpret state law).

"The thing I thought was much more troubling about the back-and-forth was the lack of preparation and basic understanding of pretty basic legal concepts", she said. Just for the record, do you know what a "motion in limine" is?

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A vote has not been taken yet on Peterson's confirmation. Following this display, one in a string of embarrassingly unqualified (and occasionally extremist) nominees, Kennedy issued a single, tired plea to the rest of the nominees up for questioning: "Any of you blog?" At least two other nominations stalled this week amid similar concerns. Trump nominated Petersen to serve as a US district court judge on September 7, 2017.

Mr. Talley was the fourth of Mr. Trump's nominees to be rated "not qualified" by the American Bar Association and the second to have received the rating unanimously.

Talley has been found to have limited legal experience and failed to disclose that he is married to a White House Counsel lawyer, creating a serious conflict of interest should he be nominated, while Mateer has expressed homophobic and transphobic views and has supported LGBTQ "conversion therapy".

Petersen defended his inability to answer the questions in a brief statement, telling Kennedy that he is aware that his path to the nomination for a district judge was unorthodox.

All five said no.

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