In the format for these Senate Judicial Hearings, the SCOTUS nominee was the last to make her opening statement. After the senators. Boy, did that work in her favor.
March 22, 2022

Watch the GOP try to accuse this legal and moral paragon of being anti-family. Watch Republicans try to smear her as anti-children. Listen to them try to convince their base that this living evidence of promise and hard work and eminent qualification does not belong on the Supreme Court of the United States.

They got nothing. Her opening statement was a shining tribute to her parents, her children, her husband, her mentors, and for reasons I cannot comprehend, America. Co-existing with those things is a pride in her name and her heritage, and for sure that will be the only thing Republicans see, and something to which they will take great umbrage.

She dared speak of her parents growing up during Jim Crow in the South, and moving to Washington, D.C. once the Civil Rights Acts had been passed. She said, "When I was born here in Washington, my parents were public school teachers, and to express both pride in their heritage and hope for the future, they gave me an African name; 'Ketanji Onyika,' which they were told means 'lovely one.'"

Lovely one, indeed.

My father, in particular, bears responsibility for my interest in the law. When I was four, we moved back to Miami so that he could be a full-time law student. We lived on the campus of the University of Miami Law School, and during those years, my mother pulled double duty, working as the sole breadwinner of our family, while also guiding and inspiring four-year-old me. My very earliest memories are of watching my father study—he had his stack of law books on the kitchen table while I sat across from him with my stack of coloring books.

My parents also instilled in me—and in my younger brother Ketajh—the importance of public service. After graduating from Howard University, Ketajh started out as a police officer, following two of our uncles. In the wake of the September 11th attacks, he volunteered for the Army, and became an infantry officer, serving two tours of duty in the Middle East. Ketajh is here today, providing his love and support as always.

And speaking of unconditional love, I would like to introduce my husband of 25 years, Dr. Patrick Jackson. I have no doubt that, without him by my side from the very beginning of this incredible professional journey, none of this would have been possible. We met in college more than three decades ago, and since then, he has been the best husband, father, and friend I could ever imagine. Patrick, I love you.

William—Patrick's identical twin—is here as well, along with his wonderful wife Dana. Also here, from Salt Lake City, Utah, are Patrick's older brother Gardie and his wife Natalie. And my very dear in-laws—the matriarch and patriarch of the Jackson family—Pamela and Gardner Jackson—have traveled here from Boston to be with me today.

And, of course, I am saving a special moment in this introduction for my daughters, Talia and Leila. Girls, I know it has not been easy as I have tried to navigate the challenges of juggling my career and motherhood. And I fully admit that I did not always get the balance right. But I hope that you have seen that with hard work, determination, and love, it can be done. I am so looking forward to seeing what each of you chooses to do with your amazing lives in this incredible country. I love you so much.

Read the entirety of her opening statement here.

Here's the full video of her opening statement, below.

Twitter was rightly moved.

Can you help us out?

For 18 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.