Nomination of Steve Six Will Not Move Forward
Steve Six, nominated by President Obama to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, was a troubling judicial nominee from the start. Six’s record as Attorney General of Kansas gave rise to significant concerns about his ability to apply the law fairly and impartially – to afford to all “Equal Justice Under Law.” What ultimately prevented his confirmation, however, was his lack of candor when answering questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee. While under oath, Six’s answers to the committee during his hearing (and in written follow-up questions) did not provide a complete picture or accurate portrayal of key actions he took during his tenure as Attorney General. Six was not straightforward in his answers, and was unwilling to assume responsibility for his actions.
Following the announcement of his nomination, several groups voiced opposition to Six, citing his interference with a major criminal investigation of Planned Parenthood in Kansas. As Attorney General, Six essentially spiked the criminal investigation by removing key evidence from the hands of the prosecution. Six also continued to pursue groundless criminal and ethical charges against the District Attorney who prosecuted the criminal case against Planned Parenthood.
When questioned by Senator Grassley (Ranking Minority Member of the Judiciary Committee) on his involvement and on the veracity of these disconcerting allegations, Six chose to answer with brief, elusive comments which sought to mislead Senator Grassley and the Senate. In his sworn testimony, Six portrayed himself as passive and reactive when in fact he was aggressive and proactive in interfering in the Planned Parenthood investigation. Judicial Action Group opposed the nomination of Six, citing his lack of candor before the Judiciary Committee among other things (Click here to read JAG's full research report on Steve Six).
Senator Leahy said on Thursday that he had received a letter from Senators Roberts and Moran reiterating the opposition to Six they had stated more than a month ago, and that, “…in deference to the objections of the Kansas Senators to our proceedings on the nomination of Six to the 10th Circuit, we will not go forward.”
The action taken by Senators Roberts and Moran should be applauded. Their statements and definitive letter of opposition properly serves as a check on the executive and judicial branches, and protects the rule of law for the people of Kansas, and all states in the 10th Circuit. Judicial Action Group recognizes this result as another step towards Judicial Renewal.