Indivisible Ventura: This Halloween: Dress as a “NOT QUALIFIED” extremist judicial nominee! Or as a free-range uterus! Then say “NO” to Sarah Pitlyk.

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12 mins read
By Julie Frontera

Action #1 – Call your senators and tell them to vote “NO” on “NOT QUALIFIED” forced-birther radical  Sarah Pitlyk for U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.

Planned Parenthood alert:  The bipartisan American Bar Association has unanimously rated Sarah Pitlyk, another extremist Federalist Society member, “not qualified” for this important position, due to her lack of trial experience. She opposes reproductive rights, the Affordable Care Act and the legal right to abortion. She fought to allow businesses and landlords the right to discriminate against women whose private health histories include abortion or birth control. Through her Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, her writings, and legal actions she participated in at forced-birther advocacy firm Thomas Moore Society (TMS), she’s demonstrated that she will impose her own religious beliefs over the lives of women and their families if she gets into a position of power. While the concept of the the Handmaid’s Tale’s Aunt Lydia becoming an judge might make a great Hollywood script, in real life, true-believer Sarah Pitlyk cannot be trusted to apply the law and legal precedents fairly and impartially to everyone who might come before the court.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Sen. [___] to vote “NO” to Sarah Pitlyk. Not only has she been judged unqualified by the American Bar Association, but this religious ideologue has already proven that she can’t be an impartial judge. Also, please stop voting for any judicial nominations who are members of the far-right Federalist Society. (Also, please write down “NO” for fellow members Justin Walker and Steven Menashi too.)

Minimal script for GOP senators: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Sen. [___] to vote “NO” to Sarah Pitlyk. That your party destroyed the “blue slip” system, no longer seems to care if candidates are even qualified, and whose partisan rulings will harm your own constituents, especially their daughters and granddaughters, implicates you in a corrupt system that will need to be cleaned out at the ballot box.  Do the right thing.

Contact:
Senator Feinsteinemail, DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harrisemail, DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Who is my representative/senator?: hq-salsa.wiredforchange.com 

Deeper Dive on Pitlyk:

Instead of dealing with the huge stack of legislation piling up from the House, McConnell has been locking in hard-right extremists for the judicial bench who will pervert American justice far into the future, no matter who becomes president. Since Trump has come to power, McConnell has managed to ram through a least four LIFETIME federal judges who were rated “not qualified by the non-partisan American Bar Association (ABA).

So, what do we know about Sarah  Pitlyk, the latest unqualified candidate.

  • Wow! This is interesting!: With people like her in charge, application forms – for apartments, jobs, even loans, may get a lot more intrusive, at least for women. “She fought a local St. Louis ordinance that barred discrimination based on “reproductive health decisions.” The law was aimed at preventing employers from hiring or firing people based on whether they use contraceptives, get pregnant outside of marriage, or have had an abortion. It also barred landlords from refusing to rent and banks from refusing to grant loans to people, based on those same criteria.” The GOP pretends to advocate for smaller government, but this amounts to opening up every woman’s nightstand drawers for inspection by radical religionists.
  • Becoming El Salvador: She argued that frozen embryos are human beings, using an offensive argument comparing embryos to slaves and that every one should be conferred full “personhood” rights. These ideas, and the laws that come from them are dangerous to women. Several hundred women in the United States have been investigated and  prosecuted for “negative” pregnancy outcomes, from violence, accidents, miscarriages and stillbirths, in states that grant personhood rights to fetuses and embryos.
  • Making stuff up: Her bizarre belief that “surrogacy has grave effects on society, such as diminished respect for motherhood...”, would limit options for the 1 in 6 U.S. couples who face infertility, and for LGBTQ couples who want to become parents.
  • This guy: She defended David Daleiden, who created the deceptively-edited videos which claimed to expose Planned Parenthood’s illegal sale of fetal tissue, a debunked myth that Pitlyk continues to spread along with false and inflammatory language describing the legal tissue donation practices of Planned Parenthood as “illegal fetal tissue trafficking” and “baby parts trafficking”. We already have our quota of liars in this administration, thank you.
  • Have we mentioned sanctions for men yet?: She defended the unconstitutional Iowa “Heartbeat Bill,” which would have banned abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, when most women do not even realize they are pregnant yet.
  • Lying about science: Despite the American Cancer Society’s assertion that no causal relationship exists between abortion and breast cancer, and, in fact, the scientific consensus is that “[o]ral contraception [is] not associated with an increased long-term risk of death[,]” and in fact may produce a net benefit in overall life expectancy, Pitlyk’s employer TMS still spreads nonsense to the contrary, including that birth control pills make women “more likely to be the victim of violent assault and murder.” What?
  • Gagging doctors: Through her work for TMS, Pitlyk has defended the Trump Administration’s “Title X Gag Rule.” which denies federal funding to any health care provider that refers patients to abortion services. Planned Parenthood announced it would forgo federal funding, rather than comply with this restrictive and dangerous rule. Side effect: many health providers will be forced to shut down, causing women all over the country to lose vital access to contraception, cancer screenings, and STD testing. 
  • And this guy: Oh, and she’s one of Kavanaugh’s biggest fans

Reading

Action #2 – Call your senators and tell them to vote “NO” on “NOT QUALIFIED”  Justin Walker for a LIFE-TIME appointment!

Their latest champion for future judicial misconduct? Justin Walker, as per normal for this crew, a white, male, highly-partisan member of the far-right extremist Federalist Society, with plenty of years in a life-time seat to create anti-American mischief. Big items on his resume: relentless cheeleading for SCOTUS Brett Kavanaugh during his nomination period, making over 70 media interviews defending him and vocal opponent of unions, public education and health care. Walker not only has nowhere near the experience required to be any kind of judge, much less one with a lifetime seat, he had not even been admitted to practice in the Western District of Kentucky, the court to which he is being nominated to be a judge, until this year.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Sen. [___] to vote “NO” to Justin Walker. Not only is he straight-out unqualified, but he has already proven that he won’t be an impartial judge. Also, please stop voting for any judicial nominations who are members of the far-right Federalist Society.

Minimal script for GOP senators: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Sen. [___] to vote “NO” to Justin Walker. That your party destroyed the “blue slip” system, no longer seems to care if candidates are even qualified, and whose partisan rulings will harm your own constituents, implicates you in a corrupt system that will need to be cleaned out at the ballot box.  Do the right thing.

Contact: (See action #1)

Action #3 – Call your senators and tell them to hold the line against Steven Menashi. 

Yeah, this one made everyone so nervous, that they’re holding him back a week, hoping we forget about him. We won’t. Call your senators to remind them what a problem he is to basic democracy. Here’s our take on him from last month.

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Senator [___] to vociferously vote against Steven Menashi to any judicial position, much less one as powerful as the Second Circuit Court, where he can damage rights for large numbers of Americans.

Contact: (See action #1)

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