During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing yesterday, Republican Texas Senator Ted Cruz grilled Judge Kenly Kiya Kato, the nominee for the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
Ted Cruz began with the question, “Is racial discrimination wrong?”
After a seven second pause, Kato said, “Senator, our Constitution prohibits race discrimination: discrimination on the basis of race.”
Cruz quickly replied, “Okay, let me ask you again.” He asked, “Is racial discrimination wrong?”
Kato said, “Senator, as a judge, I do not deal with issues of morality, or whether something is…”
Cruz interrupted, “You don’t have any views on whether it is right or wrong?”
She said, “Senator because that is an issue that is frequently litigated before the courts, pursuant to canon three of the code of conduct…”
Cruz interrupted, “Okay, so why does the Constitution prohibit racial discrimination?”
She said, “Senator, I think it’s part of our Constitution and this nation’s history of aiming for equal justice and treating people, regardless of any protected class status, equally and fairly.”
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After another question, Cruz said, “You and I are both graduates at Harvard Law school.” He continued, “As you know, our alma mater is currently before the Supreme Court for its long-standing practice of discriminating against Asian Americans, and many top universities across the country have vicious discrimination policies against Asian Americans.”
After asking if discrimination against Asian Americans concerned her, she did not directly answer the question.
Watch the rest of the exchange here:
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