McDonald Chief Justice Nomination In Doubt As Slossberg Recusal Questioned

Mar 11, 2018

On Friday, Democrats publicly called out one of their own, two weeks after Gayle Slossberg said she would recuse herself from voting on the confirmation of Justice Andrew McDonald.

If confirmed, McDonald would be the first openly-gay state supreme court chief justice in the country.

“Obviously, that makes it likely that the nomination would be defeated in the Senate,” Senate Democratic Pro Tempore President Martin Looney said.

Looney said if it’s strictly a party-line vote, McDonald won’t clear the Senate.

“But, if they choose to recognize the merits of the nominee and make it a bipartisan vote as most judicial nominations of the past have been, they can deal themselves a great deal of credit,” Looney said.

While Looney acknowledged that it’s Slossberg’s prerogative to recuse herself in this instance, he’s questioning the move because she voted for McDonald when he was a Supreme Court nominee back in 2013.

Slossberg (far left) announced on March 9 that she wouldn't seek an eighth term as a state senator.
Credit CT Senate Democrats / Flickr

Senate Republican Pro Tempore President Len Fasano slammed Looney and a group of Democratic senators for comments made regarding the recusal.

“The bullying and intimidation tactics used in an attempt to garner support for Justice Andrew McDonald’s nomination to be Chief Justice have gotten out of control,” Fasano said in a release. “Sen. Looney, someone who has said this process shouldn’t be partisan, is questioning the decision of one of his caucus members purely for politics.”

Slossberg announced on Friday that she would not run again in a state senate race.