Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall joined 17 other state attorneys general to warn the Senate about a federal court nominee who he says is a "far-left extremist" who is connected to left-wing activist groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
President Joe Biden nominated Nancy Abudu to a judgeship on the 11th circuit court, a lifelong appointment if the Senate approves her. Aubudu is the SPLC's director of Strategic Litigation, a position that Marshall said she's used to engaging in "dishonest and divisive actions."
Based in Mongomery, the SPLC is a left-wing legal advocacy organization specializing in civil rights and public interest litigation.
The SPLC also provides information about who it deems to be hate groups to the FBI and other law enforcement agencies. It has worked with big tech organizations like Google, Facebook, Twitter and Amazon.
For the last 30 years, the SPLC has been accused of hypocrisy, facilitating an unhealthy work environment and leveraging its influence for progressive ideological objectives.
In the 1990s, the Montgomery Advertiser highlighted staffers' allegations of racial discrimination within the SPLC. That story was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1995 "for its probe of questionable management practices and self-interest at the Southern Poverty Law Center."
In 2019, SPLC co-founder Morris Dees was accused of sexual harassment and complacency with workplace racial discrimination. He was removed from the organization soon after that.
Many conservatives have criticized the law center for having a left-wing bias in the past. The SPLC produces a Hate Map to track radical and extremist groups.
Conservatives accuse the SPLC of including groups with standard conservative agendas on the same list as violent organizations like the Ku Klux Klan.
SPLC has faced numerous defamation lawsuits over its naming of those hate groups.
Earlier this month, an SPLC attorney was arrested in Atlanta on a domestic terrorism charge after rioters threw Molotov cocktails, rocks, fireworks and bricks at police officers at the Atlanta Public Safety Training Center, which left-wing activists have dubbed "cop city." The rioters also set equipment on fire. The SPLC said that the employee acted as a legal observer and defended the rioters against "a months-long escalation of policing tactics against protesters and observers."
Marshall cited a comment Abudu made equating bans on felons voting to slavery and said Aubudu compared Americans to Jim Crow-era racists and worked for the National Lawyers Guild, whose members describe themselves as "radical movement legal activists."
Abudu also previously worked for the ACLU's Voting Rights Project, where she served as a senior staff attorney in Florida.
"Nancy Abudu is a far-left extremist who holds a leadership position at the divisive and discredited Southern Poverty Law Center, where she routinely spouts dishonest accusations of racism against law enforcement and millions of other Americans," said Marshall. "It is beyond belief that she would even be nominated for a federal judgeship, and even more unthinkable that she could be approved to sit on the 11th Circuit. The U.S. Senate must reject her nomination."
Marshall was joined in his opposition by the attorneys general of Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and West Virginia.
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