Rep. Jim Clyburn: A Black Woman On Supreme Court Is Priority Over Vice President

House Majority Whip and South Carolina Rep. Jim Clyburn said Friday that putting a Black woman on the Supreme Court is a bigger priority than naming one as vice president.

“The V.P. is good on style, but, on substance, give me an African American woman on the Supreme Court,” House Majority Whip James Clyburn said on PBS News Hour. “That’s where we determine how our democracy will be preserved.”

In March, Clyburn encouraged Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to pick a Black woman as his vice president. However, he has appeared to have changed his tune saying Biden picking a Black woman as his running mate would be a positive thing, but not a guarantee and adding that focusing on the Democratic Party alone would be “foolhardy.”

“Picking a Black woman as his running mate would be a “plus” not a “must,” saying it was a bit “foolhardy” to be focusing solely on the Democratic Party’s choice for vice president. Other things, like a Supreme Court nominee, are equally — if not more — important, Clyburn told PBS.

Clyburn referenced the 5-4 decision by the highest court, considering the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which gave states the freedom to change election laws without needing prior approval by the federal government.

“This Supreme Court has neutered the Voting Rights Act of 1965,” Clyburn told PBS. “And so I am very concerned about the composition of the United States Supreme Court.”

Many are waiting on Biden to officially announce his nominee for vice president. Biden’s shortlist includes Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) Black Caucus Chair Karen Bass of California and former White House national security adviser Susan Rice.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, co-chair of Joe Biden’s vice president selection committee, told MSNBC Tuesday Biden plans on spending the next several days interviewing his the finalists to be his running mate.

“We have amazing women that have been a part of this process,” Garcetti told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” Tuesday. “We’re keeping them all, we vetted them heavily. All of them have passed a vet, and now in this next week, week and a half, Mr. Biden can spend some time with them.”