An analysis of the testimony by William G. Myers III at the Senate hearing on his nomination to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and of Mr. Myers’ written answers to Senators’ post-hearing questions, confirms that he is unfit to serve in a lifetime seat on the court that decides the fate of environmental safeguards for three-quarters of our nation’s public lands, and the rights of hundreds of thousands of Native Americans.
Compiled by Earthjustice, People For the American Way, and Community Rights Counsel, the report highlights renewed concerns about Myers’ hostility to environmental protections and the rights of Native Americans; his unflagging advocacy for the mining and beef industries; his complete lack of judicial experience; and his extreme views on property rights and constitutional protections.
“It’s hard to think of another nominee who fails at so many tests. He has no judicial experience. His view of the appropriate role of government would be to roll back a half-century of progress on civil rights and social justice. He would dismantle environmental protections in favor of industry and lobbying concerns, and he shows an utter lack of respect for the rights of tribal peoples,” said Ralph G. Neas, President of People For the American Way.
“We all depend on fair and impartial judges to uphold and enforce clean air, clean water and other basic laws. William Myers’ responses to Senators’ questions further demonstrate that he is an anti-environmental ideologue who is unfit to be a lifetime court of appeals judge,” said Glenn Sugameli, Senior Legislative Counsel for Earthjustice. “Unfortunately, the evidence shows that, if confirmed as a judge, he would unfairly favor industry over basic environmental safeguards and the rule of law.”
“William Myers has devoted his career to lobbying for grazing and mining interests, and he continued to champion those interests as a lawyer for the Department of the Interior. His only qualifications for a seat on the Ninth Circuit should be disqualifications,” said Doug Kendall, Executive Director of Community Rights Counsel.” Just as the first Earth Day galvanized the American commitment to a clean and healthy environment, the nomination of William Myers is galvanizing Americans around the court threat to environmental protection.”
In the wake of his hearing, opposition to Myers’ nomination has deepened among the nation’s environmental organizations, civil rights advocates, and Native American tribes, and has broadened in significant respects.
- Major newspapers have editorialized sharply against Myers. Newspapers serving the states covered by the 9th Circuit that have urged the rejection of his nomination include the San Jose Mercury News, The Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Arizona Daily Star.
- Forty-two members of the House of Representatives have sent a letter urging the Senate to reject his nomination.
- More than 175 groups now oppose Myers’ confirmation, including unprecedented opposition by Native American and tribal organizations, and by the National Wildlife Federation, which has never before opposed a judicial nomination by any President.
On April 1, Myers’ nomination was sent to the Senate floor by the Senate Judiciary Committee on a narrow, party-line vote of 10-9. Today’s report, “Unfit to Judge: Hearing and Post-Hearing Record Reinforces the Case Against the Confirmation of William G. Myers III,” and additional information regarding the Myers’ nomination, can be found at:
Earthjustice’s Judging the Environment: William Myers
People for the American Way
Community Rights Counsel