What They’re Saying: Members of Law-Enforcement Express Unequivocal Support for Judicial Nominee Nusrat Choudhury


May 25, 2022

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Nusrat Choudhury, an extraordinarily well qualified nominee to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, has been the latest subject of defamatory Republican attacks lacking any factual basis. Senate Republicans have engaged in an outrageous campaign of manufactured gotcha, asking Choudhury to answer for comments she never made and then disparaging her for clarifying she never made them. These attacks are the latest escalation in a sustained campaign by Senate Republicans that targets women of color who have worked to advance civil and human rights.

Senate Judiciary Chair Durbin was right to reject Republican requests for a second hearing for  Choudhury. Republicans simply cannot be allowed to derail the confirmation process of highly qualified nominees by inventing a controversy out of whole cloth. They cannot be allowed to manufacture quotes with the most inflammatory statement they can think of, and nominees cannot be asked to play a game of “spot the lie” where they are forced to answer for a statement they did not make because they assume a senator is accurately relaying the record to them.

Choudhury is expected to receive a Committee vote tomorrow and has earned broad support, particularly from members of law enforcement and opposing counsel who have worked with her directly. Here’s what they’re saying: 

  • Thornton, Colorado Police Chief and former Milwaukee Assistant Chief of Police Terrence Gordon: “In leading the plaintiffs’ team during negotiations, Ms. Choudhury’s arguments seemed to be based on no agendas beyond interpretations of the law, the Constitution, and the reasonableness of implementing aspects of the proposed settlement. I am aware of former Milwaukee city attorneys that I know and respect who formed the same opinion of her during the months of intense negotiations.”
  • Chief of Staff for City of Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission and former opposing counsel, Naomi Gehling: “Ms. Choudhury has been accused of factually incorrect statements critical of law enforcement. That’s not the kind of person we worked with – she was always fact-based and accurate in all of her communications with us… I have every confidence in her temperament and ability to be an impartial judge and know her to be exceptionally well-qualified for the position.” 
  • Former City Attorney for Biloxi, Mississippi and former opposing counsel Gerald Blessey: “[Ms. Choudhury’s] expressions of utmost respect for law enforcement personnel and the difficult challenges that police encounter as they protect and serve the public are consistent with my first-hand experience in working with her on policing issues… I support her nomination without reservation.” 
  • Former Milwaukee City Attorney Grant Langley and former Deputy City Attorney Jan Smokowicz (former opposing counsel): “Though strong in her advocacy for her clients, she was nonetheless receptive to reasonable and ultimately successful compromises required to reach the settlement. Our interaction leads us to believe that Attorney Choudhury will bring considerable intellect, diligence, compassion, and reasonableness to the federal judiciary.”
  • Former Assistant U.S. Attorney and former opposing counsel John Clopper: “Nusrat is committed to public service. She has dedicated her career to the public interest and the pursuit of equal justice under the law. Nusrat possesses a remarkably broad knowledge of the law, and she is deeply committed to its unbiased application. Indeed, Nusrat is among the most open-minded lawyers I have litigated against.” 
  • Institute for Justice Senior Attorney William Maurer: “In that regard, Ms. Choudhury has treated those with whom she interacts with professionalism, collegiality, and respect. She does this regardless of the person’s social status, ideological views, race, or religion. As a representative of a group that is decidedly libertarian, there are undoubtedly issues on which Ms. Choudhury and I disagree…I believe that any litigant appearing before her would get a fair hearing regardless of the issue.”
  • Former Assistant Prosecuting Attorney and Michigan District Court Judge Libby Hines: “Based on my direct work with and numerous conversations with Nusrat Choudhury, I know she respects the police and the difficult and important job they do… In my opinion, it would be more than just a shame to ignore her record and reject such an exceptionally qualified judicial nominee based on a characterization I know to be inaccurate and unfair.” 
  • Current and Former Prosecutors: “ Ms. Choudhury would bring deep litigation experience to the EDNY. Over the course of her accomplished career, she has litigated more than two dozen complex cases, almost all of them in federal courts in New York and throughout the country. Her reputation for even-handedness, temperate demeanor, and sound judgment are widely recognized by those who have worked with her, as evidenced by our willingness to support her nomination. She is well-liked and well-respected by her fellow attorneys (including adversaries) and the bench.”
  • Bipartisan Group of Legal Scholars: “While we hold diverse ideological and political views—and include members of both major political parties—we share a common belief that the country deserves federal judges of the highest caliber. Nusrat has proven that she is exceptionally qualified to serve on the federal courts based on her years of accomplished experience as a litigator in front of both state and federal courts.”

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