Community Rights Counsel Community Rights Counsel Community Rights Counsel Community Rights Counsel

About CRC

Legal Resources

Community Rights Report Newsletter

Support Us

Newsroom

Redefining Federalism

Warming Law Blog


Community Rights Counsel
1301 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 502
Washington, DC 20036
Phone: 202-296-6889
Fax: 202-296-6895


COMMUNITY RIGHTS COUNSEL · DEFENDERS OF WILDLIFE EARTHJUSTICE · ENDANGERED SPECIES COALITION
ENVIRONMENTAL WORKING GROUP · FRIENDS OF THE EARTH
GREENPEACE · NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL TRUST
NATURAL RESOURCES DEFENSE COUNCIL · OCEANA
PHYSICIANS FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
SIERRA CLUB · SOUTHERN UTAH WILDERNESS ALLIANCE
THE WILDERNESS SOCIETY


February 4, 2003

RE: Nomination of Miguel Estrada

Dear Senator:

We respectfully urge that based upon the current record, the Senate, in the exercise of its constitutional advise and consent responsibility, should not confirm Miguel Estrada to a lifetime position on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The D.C. Circuit is justifiably viewed as the most crucial court for environmental protection after the Supreme Court. Its exclusive jurisdiction to hear challenges under many laws results in rulings on whether to uphold or strike down many critical national environmental safeguards that are seldom reviewed by the Supreme Court.

The attached September 23, 2002 letter to the Judiciary Committee from national environmental groups sets forth the standard that we believe the Senate should apply to the consideration of Mr. Estrada. In particular, the letter urges that Senators not vote to confirm D.C. Circuit nominees unless Senators "ensure that each nominee affirmatively establish his or her qualifications…. No President has a mandate to appoint to the federal courts judges who are or may be hostile to laws protecting the environment and the public's health and welfare. The mere absence of disqualifying evidence in a nominee's record should not constitute sufficient grounds for confirmation."

Based upon the current record, we believe that Mr. Estrada has not met this standard, in light of his limited public record on many of the key issues before the D.C. Circuit, the lack or unavailability of writings that would reveal his qualifications, and his testimony at his hearing before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, including his sweeping and repeated refusals to provide his views about any cases that the Supreme Court has decided in the past. The Senate should exercise its constitutional responsibility to confirm lifetime federal judicial nominees only if there is an adequate record to ensure that they will fairly decide critical issues regarding protection of clean air, clean water, endangered species, and special places.

Thank you for consideration of our views on this lifetime nomination to a critically important court.

Sincerely yours,

Doug Kendall
Executive Director
Community Rights Counsel

William Snape
Vice President for Law
Defenders of Wildlife

Vawter "Buck" Parker
Executive Director
Earthjustice

Beth Lowell
Policy Analyst
Endangered Species Coalition

Richard wiles
Senior Vice President
Environmental Working Group

Brent Blackwelder
President
Friends of the Earth

Andrea Durbin
National Campaigns Director
Greenpeace

Philip E. Clapp
President
National Environmental Trust

Gregory Wetstone
Director of Advocacy
Natural Resources Defense Council

Dawn M. Martin
Chief Operating Officer
Oceana

Robert K. Musil, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Executive Director and CEO
Physicians for Asocial Responsibility

Pat Gallagher
Director, Sierra Club Environmental Law Program
Sierra Club

Gail Hoskisson
Washington Representative
Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance

William H. Meadows
President
The Wilderness Society

Attachment

CRC Note: The letter sent to Senator Schumer that is mentioned in the above letter can be read here.

 

Back to CRC Home

If you have questions or comments about this website or
Community Rights Counsel email us!

2005 Community Rights Counsel. All rights reserved.