Radical progressives seek to turn the state’s highest court into an automatic buffer for their agenda. The purely ideological drive is an assault on the independent judiciary, a bulwark of democracy.
Wednesday, City and State Reported that a major gay Democratic club wrote to Governor Kathy Hochul convicting the openly gay judge who is now acting chief of the Court of Appeals. It’s just part of the unseemly effort to force Hochul to appoint a southpaw to replace outgoing chief justice Janet DiFiore.
“Although the judge [Anthony] Cannataro is openly gay, he does not represent our values,” wrote Jim Owles, president of the Liberal Democrat Club and LGBTQ activist Allen Roskoff. This clearly means that it is not guaranteed to ram down the public’s throats the entire agenda of the left, from handcuffs to cops to the imposition of the “right” of children to gender transition surgery to protecting the anti-Israeli Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.
From the moment DiFiore announced her retirement, progressives rushed to denounce her and the so-called ‘conservative’ majority in the High Court, who rightly stood with the court judge in trial that struck down the blatantly unconstitutional gerrymander of state democrats. Their reproaches extend to other cases where the court failed to make the “right” decision in cases involving tenants, immigrants, criminal defendants and the green agenda.
The Chief Justice heads the seven-member Court of Appeals and oversees the operation of the entire state court system. Hochul is expected to name a permanent replacement for DiFiore this year, once the Judicial Appointments Commission submits its list of seven nominees.
It’s not just defenders like Roskoff who attack Cannataro as the “wrong” type of homosexual. (It’s standard practice for the Owles Club, which is also pushing to remove Ed Koch’s name from the Queensboro Bridge.)
For example, 20 Senate Democratic states, led by Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris, recently wrote the Judiciary Committee urging him to recommend progressive, culturally diverse candidates with a background in “advocacy” work (e.g., criminal defense attorneys, tenant attorneys, etc.) It’s an implied threat to take down Cannatoro if Hochul le nominated for the position.
By the way, the high court is already totally dominated by Democrats. But the party’s growing far left is not satisfied. He wants a justice system that will smile even at blatantly unconstitutional laws and will indeed impose its agenda without having to pass legislation.
Indeed, progressives see a chance to translate their current power in Albany into a force that will endure even if (when, we hope) voters reject their agenda.
The New York County Lawyers Association issued a statement denouncing efforts to turn the selection process into “a brazenly political process” to match the “results-oriented political views” of “Senator Gianaris and others.”
Judges are supposed to be independent of politicians. They are responsible for deciding the merits of a case under the laws and Constitution of the State of New York.
For once, instead of sticking his finger on the political winds, Hochul should show some courage and publicly reject this horrific effort to politicize New York’s highest court. .