Clyburn Predicts Bipartisan Support for Michelle Childs as SCOTUS Pick

Thursday, House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) appeared on FNC’s “Your World” to tout possible Supreme Court pick Michelle Childs, who he is promoting to be appointed by President Joe Biden to fill the vacancy to be left by Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer.

Clyburn revealed he had gotten a favorable response from his fellow South Carolina congressional colleagues Sens. Tim Scott (R-SC) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) when he suggested Childs.

Partial transcript as follows:

SANDRA SMITH, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: Our next guest predicting potential Supreme Court pick J. Michelle Childs would secure some GOP votes if nominated by the president.

House Majority Whip South Carolina Democratic Congressman James Clyburn is floating that idea.

Tell us more about it. What do you think? And what are your wishes when it comes to the president filling this seat?


REP. JAMES CLYBURN (D-SC): Well, thank you. And thank you very much for having me.

As you may know, this situation we’re in today is about 2 years old. It was in February 2020 that the president, or, at the time, candidate Joe Biden made the commitment that, if given the opportunity, he would nominate the first African-American woman to serve on the Supreme Court.

I think that one of the real blights on the history of this great country is the fact that, of all the years, there’s never been a black woman even considered for the United States Supreme Court.

Here we are, having had five women, two retired, one has passed away, one retired, and three sitting there now, but nobody has even ever talked about putting an African-American woman there.

So, when I talked with the president, now-president, then-nominee, candidate, I asked him to take a look at that, and to pledge to do something about that. He took a look. He pledged to do something. And he is now going to do it.

SMITH: So, who is it specifically that you have in mind?

I will read a quote from you verbatim: “I want us to make sure that it is a black woman. I want to make sure that it is a woman that will get universal support.”

You said: “When I say universal, I mean, bipartisan support.”

Who could garner that, in your view?

CLYBURN: I suspect that all of them could. But I just know one who would.

And that’s J. Michelle Childs, because, when I first advanced her name, I talked with the two Republican senators from South Carolina, Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, and told them that I was going to advance her name, asked them what they thought about her. Both of them were very, very favorably disposed when speaking of them — of her.

So, I think that signals — that’s a good signal.

SMITH: And, of course, she’s the U.S. district judge.

So, you say that Tim Scott and Lindsey Graham would support her. I believe you have described both as very high on Michelle Childs.

What is your vision to fill that seat? Obviously, there’s a lot of talk about the potential for the president to give a nod to the progressive crowd to fill that seat. Some want to take a more centrist route. So, describe Childs and why she would be the best pick, in your view.

CLYBURN: Well, to be clear, I said they’re favorably disposed toward to her. They are high on her. I have no idea how they will vote if she were the nominee.

I do know this, that, before she was a district — a federal district judge, she was a South Carolina circuit judge, before that, a workers comp judge. The state — she was the deputy director of a state agency.

And she has incredible credentials. As a federal district judge, she’s president of the Federal Judges Association. And when she was a circuit judge, the state chief justice of the Supreme Court often went to her to sit as a special judge and — on the Supreme Court.

So, she has had tremendous leadership wherever she’s been. She was born up there in Detroit, father died when she was 13 years old. Her mother moved her and her sister to Columbia, South Carolina, graduated from Columbia High School, was the valedictorian of her class, president of the student body.

Got a scholarship to University of South Florida, an honors college.


CLYBURN: And that is good credentials, it seems to me.

She has two master’s degrees and a juris doctorate.


Whip Clyburn, great to get you on, on that. And I’m looking through the statement that Nancy Pelosi just issued a few moments ago. And I think it notable that — and I’m reading through this very quickly — that nowhere in there did I see her back the call for President Biden, which he has said many times in his wishes, that this be a black female that fills the vacant seat by Breyer.

I thought that notable. I will just give you a real quick final thought there.

CLYBURN: Well, I have no idea whether Nancy Pelosi even knows any of these candidates.

I know several of them. And I know Judge Childs very, very well. And so I don’t think she’s opposed to anybody. Maybe she’s just expressing her knowledge of them.

SMITH: OK. I’m sure we will — I’m sure we will find out a whole lot more soon.

And a lot of the justices now, I believe, have just put out their statements upon his announcement of the retirement, Justice Breyer.

Whip Clyburn, we really appreciate you joining us. Thank you, sir.

CLYBURN: Thank you.

Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor


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