“Planned Parenthood and our supporters call on senators to vote ‘no’ on Vitter’s confirmation.”
WASHINGTON D.C. — Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on whether to advance Wendy Vitter’s nomination to a lifetime appointment on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. The vote follows Vitter withholding information from the Senate committee about her anti-abortion record, publicly misrepresenting her background in a confirmation hearing, and failing to state whether landmark cases Brown v. Board of Education and Roe v. Wade were correctly decided.
Civil right groups, reproductive health care groups, and advocates across the country have come out to strongly oppose Wendy Vitter’s nomination. Planned Parenthood Action Fund has been mobilizing its supporters to call on their senators to oppose Wendy Vitter’s confirmation for a lifetime seat on the federal bench. Nearly 40,000 people signed a petition calling on the U.S. Senate to reject Wendy Vitter’s nomination. According to NPR, “the American Bar Association gave Vitter's nomination its lowest qualified rating, with a minority of those reviewing her record rating her "unqualified."
Statement from Dana Singiser, Vice President of Public Policy and Government Affairs for Planned Parenthood:
Wendy Vitter is unfit to receive a lifetime judicial appointment. Vitter has displayed poor judgment throughout the nomination process, including withholding information and misrepresenting her record. The truth is that Wendy Vitter is an anti-abortion advocate who has not demonstrated an ability to rely on facts and evidence over propaganda in order to act as an impartial judge. Planned Parenthood and our supporters call on senators to vote ‘no’ on Vitter’s confirmation.
In the questionnaire Vitter submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee, she omitted around 95 pages of documents that listed over 180 activities – including anti-abortion panels, speeches, and rallies – in an apparent effort to disguise her extreme views and political biases. In the past, some judicial nominees who’ve omitted information have had their nominations blocked by senators. One of the activities Vitter omitted was how she moderated an anti-abortion panel, where she promoted the baseless claim that women who take contraceptive pills are more likely to die violent deaths. Vitter also encouraged panelists to discuss scientifically baseless theories and push anti-abortion propaganda.
Vitter’s nomination is part of the Trump-Pence administration’s broader efforts to remake the judicial branch. Trump has appointed a record-breaking number of federal judges and confirmed more circuit court nominees than any president in modern history at this point in their term. Following Trump’spromise to appoint judges that would overturn Roe v. Wade, most of these nominees are extremely conservative, and many hold views that are hostile to reproductive health and rights.
As more and more anti-abortion bills are signed into laws in the states, courts are often the only line of defense to protect our rights — including the right to control our own bodies guaranteed by Roe v. Wade, which Vitter refused to say was correctly decided.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.