Press Releases

Nadler & Johnson Request Special Committee to Investigate Hiring of Law Clerk with History of Racist, Bigoted Conduct

Washington, March 8, 2022

Washington, D.C. - Today, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet Chairman Hank Johnson (D-GA) sent a letter urging the Judicial Council of the Second Circuit and the Committee on Judicial Conduct and Disability of the Judicial Conference to vacate and reevaluate the Second Judicial Council's decision clearing two federal judges for misconduct over the hiring of a law clerk with a documented history of racist and hateful conduct. The Members have also requested that a special committee be convened to investigate this matter. 

In their letter, the Members wrote, "We write to address the recent dismissal of complaints of judicial misconduct concerning two judges who hired a law clerk with a documented history of racist and hateful conduct. The written orders justifying that dismissal seem untethered from the facts. Subsequent reporting has only further called those conclusions into question."

The Members continued, "The Chief Justice has assured us that the federal judiciary is willing to keep its own house in order. Episodes like this put that assurance to the test.  At base, this case looks like yet another instance of judges ignoring clear misconduct and closing ranks to protect their own. We trust that you will appreciate that context as you examine the record and consider the appropriate next steps."

Full text of today's letter is available here


In November, Chairs Nadler and Johnson led a letter to Chief Justice John Roberts and Circuit Judge Charles Wilson urging an investigation into the conduct of two federal judges for their hiring of a law clerk with a history of racist and hateful conduct. The letter caused the Acting Chief Judge of the Eleventh Circuit to identify a judicial misconduct complaint, which was transferred to the Second Circuit. Two weeks later, the Chief Judge of the Second Circuit dismissed the complaint without referring the matter for investigation by a special committee.  

Since the dismissal, new reporting has confirmed previous accounts of the law clerk's nakedly racist behavior.