President Obama’s U.S. District Court judgeship nominee Michael Boggs was accused of a left-wing pro-abortion group of making political donations that violated ethics rules on judges.
Boggs, whose nomination for a lifetime seat in the Northern District of Georgia is currently pending before the U.S. Senate, came under fire from the group NARAL Pro-Choice America for previously sponsoring un-passed bills in the Georgia legislature to strengthen parental consent laws for abortion and to create state-sponsored “Choose Life” license plates.
Boggs, who has had one confirmation hearing so far, was bumped from this week’s Senate Judiciary Committee agenda by Democratic chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, who will instead review six other Georgia judicial nominees. At least two Democrats on the committee plan to vote “no” on Boggs.
Boggs was linked to two political contributions that call into question his judicial ethics, according to new research compiled this week by NARAL and obtained by The Daily Caller.
The Committee to Elect Mike Boggs in 2012 contributed $1,500 to the group Georgia Conservatives in Action, while Boggs was a sitting judge. Boggs also served in 2004 on the Bush-Cheney campaign’s Democrats for Bush National Steering Committee in the state of Georgia while running for a judgeship.
NARAL believes that Boggs’ 2012 contribution represents a violation of the Georgia Code of Judicial Conduct, which regulates the activity of judges in the state, because Georgia Conservatives in Action has endorsed many candidates for office. Democratic Sen. Chris Coons said in a hearing that the issue is “of some concern to me” and suggested that Boggs engaged in “crossing a line that’s fairly clear.”
According to NARAL: “The Georgia Code of Judicial Conduct says that judges must not only ‘avoid all impropriety’ but must also avoid even the ‘appearance of impropriety,’ which it defines as ‘conduct that would create in reasonable minds a perception that the judge’s ability to carry out judicial responsibilities with integrity, impartiality and competence is impaired.'” The code further provides that ‘Judges Shall Refrain from Political Activity Inappropriate to their Judicial Office.’ Specifically, Canon 7A (1) (c) says a judge or candidate shall not ‘make a contribution to a political organization.”
NARAL noted that the chief investigator for the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission, the body that can take disciplinary action against judges, and also the chief justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, which must authorize disciplinary action against judges, both accompanied Boggs to his Senate confirmation hearing.
Boggs is just one of a handful of recent Obama nominees to alienate liberals and lose Democratic support in the Senate.
Obama’s nomination of former Bank of America executive Stefan Selig to a top post in the Commerce Department sparked a left-wing CREDO Action petition calling on Obama to withdraw the nomination because Selig took a $9 million bonus from Bank of America just as he received the nomination.
Vivek Murthy, Obama’s 36-year old Surgeon General nominee, also lost support from a bloc of Senate Democrats due to his gun-control activism and relative lack of medical experience, prompting the administration to put Murthy’s confirmation process on hold.
Debo Adegbile, nominated to head the civil rights division in Attorney General Eric Holder’s Justice Department, was voted down in a bipartisan Senate vote in March after it was revealed that he represented convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal during his time at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.