Judicial Crisis Network Again Launches Deceptive Ad Campaign Against Democratic Judicial Nominee

Politico reported that the discredited Judicial Crisis Network (JCN) will spend “about $250,000” on “an ad campaign Friday targeting Jane Kelly, a judge on President Barack Obama's short-list for a possible Supreme Court nominee,” for her work as a criminal defense attorney.

The Judicial Crisis Network's ad campaign repeats deceptive attacks made by JCN policy director Carrie Severino, who smeared Kelly in a March 3 post in the National Review, attacking her work as a public defender on behalf of her client because she “argued her client was not a threat to society,” Severino's claim not only ignored the basic constitutional principles of the Sixth Amendment, it also ignored the rest of the cited Des Moines Register story, which stated Kelly was noting the evaluation of “a psychologist, who said that Frederickson was not a danger to others.”

The Judicial Crisis Network's ad campaign follows JCN's dishonest tradition of attacking judicial nominees through guilt-by-legal-representation, including 2012 attacks on Michigan Supreme Court candidate Bridget McCormack's assistance in the representation of Guantanamo detainees, and the recent misrepresentation of a legal brief filed by potential Supreme Court nominee Sri Srinivasan. From Politico:

The conservative Judicial Crisis Network is launching an ad campaign Friday targeting Jane Kelly, a judge on President Barack Obama's short-list for a possible Supreme Court nominee, for her work defending a client on child pornography charges who later was convicted of murder.

“This is Jane Kelly. President Obama may appoint her to the Supreme Court. As a lawyer she argued that her client, an admitted child molester, wasn't a threat to society. That client was found with more than 1,000 files of child pornography and later convicted for murdering and molesting a 5-year-old girl from Iowa. Not a threat to society? Tell your senator, Jane Kelly doesn't belong on the Supreme Court,” the narrator says.

The ad buy will start at about $250,000 and is aimed at dampening support for Kelly among moderate Democrats. In addition to running in Iowa -- the home state of both Kelly and Republican Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley -- the ad will begin running on Sunday news shows in the home states of Sens. Michael Bennet of Colorado, Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota.


Judicial Crisis Network has emerged as a key player in the battle over the imminent nomination, spending big sums to defend the Senate GOP's position and to persuade centrist Democrats to side with Republicans. The group has hired GOP research group America Rising to research the backgrounds of potential nominees such as Kelly.