Sen. Dianne Feinstein
DC: (202) 224-3841
LA: (310) 914-7300
Sen. Kamala Harris
DC: (202) 224-3553
LA: (213) 894-5000
Hello, my name is __________, and I am a constituent of Senator ___________'s in _______________, California. I am calling to urge the senator to do everything possible to stop the nomination of Brett Talley as a district court judge. Talley is uniquely unqualified for the position, with only three years as an attorney and no trial experience. Additionally, his conflicts of interest with the Trump administration, with his wife part of Trump's counsel's office, would leave him frequently unable to perform his duties. Federal-court jurisprudence must not be dumbed down so dramatically as it would be with Talley's confirmation. Thank you!
Brett J. Talley, the 36-year-old lawyer whose nomination for a lifetime federal judgeship in Alabama was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee last week, is perhaps the most inappropriate of Trump's judicial nominations. (That's a high bar to clear, considering the numerous poor choices who already have been confirmed.) Indeed, the American Bar Association, which vets federal judicial nominees, has rated Talley as “not qualified.” A far-right political blogger until three years ago, Talley has never tried a case before a jury, and his frequent and explosive political statements while blogging would leave his impartiality continually in question. (For example, he wrote a blog post a month after the Sandy Hook mass shooting in Connecticut, calling on people to join the NRA.)
Additionally, when asked by the Judiciary Committee to disclose family members who are likely to present potential conflicts of interest if he is confirmed, he failed to identify any family members — even his wife, Annie Donaldson, who serves Trump as chief of staff to White House Counsel Donald McGahn.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, voted against Talley's nomination there and on Monday issued a statement saying the Senate should not confirm him. “By failing to disclose that his wife is one of President Trump’s lawyers, Talley has betrayed his obligation to be open and transparent with the Senate and American people,” Feinstein said. “Talley’s nomination shouldn’t be considered by the Senate unless he answers questions about this glaring omission [and clarifies] when he would recuse himself” due to conflicts of interest.