Goodwin Liu has sent the Senate Judiciary Committee additional background materials, including past writings and public remarks, amid criticism from conservatives that the appellate court nominee was not complete in his initial answers to the committee.
Liu, a law professor and associate dean at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, has been nominated for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. His nomination is shaping up as an ideological battle, in large part because of Liu’s membership in liberal legal organizations and his academic writing.
As all nominees are required to do, Liu filled out a questionnaire from the Judiciary Committee that asks for cases he’s litigated, speeches he’s given, and other background information. He submitted the questionnaire in late February and, then on March 3, 16 and 20, he sent the committee supplemental materials he missed the first time around. Click here (PDF) for his updated answer, including the new materials.
Conservative bloggers, including National Review’s Ed Whelan, have questioned how Liu could have missed the materials, especially given that, according to one answer on the questionnaire, he was preparing at least as far back as February 2009 for a possible nomination. (The nomination came on Feb. 24, 2010.)
“It is imperative that the committee conduct an investigation to satisfy itself that it has received all relevant materials before it proceeds with a hearing on Liu’s nomination,” Whelan wrote in a blog post Wednesday. Liu’s hearing is scheduled for April 16.
Also on Wednesday, Whelan wrote about “yet another” omission by Liu: a 2004 panel discussion on the legacy of Brown v. Board of Education. The event was not among the 67 appearances that Liu listed in his initial answers to the questionnaire or in his three supplemental submissions.
A White House official did not have an immediate comment on the criticism.
The completeness of nominees’ answers to the questionnaire is an occasional point of controversy. Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. and Justice Sonia Sotomayor submitted supplemental materials prior to their confirmations. Last month, more than a year after the Senate confirmed him, Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. disclosed that he did not provide all the materials he should have.