Donziger: Biden's Nomination of Trump Court Pick 'Particularly Repulsive'
Jennifer Rearden was part of the Chevron legal team responsible for imprisoning human rights attorney Steven Donziger.
While the Republican Party is unapologetically anti-earth and pro-climate crisis, the Democratic Party plays the role of the opposition. But the cracks in the duopoly’s facade are showing.
From a November 2021 Guardian story:
Just four days after landmark climate talks in Scotland in which Joe Biden vowed the US will “lead by example” in tackling dangerous global heating, the president’s own administration is providing a jarring contradiction – the largest ever sale of oil and gas drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico.
The US federal government is on Wednesday launching an auction of more than 80m acres of the gulf for fossil fuel extraction, a record sell-off that will lock in years, and potentially decades, of planet-heating emissions.
“Biden is approving more oil and gas drilling permits on public lands than Trump,” reads a December 2021 Washington Post headline.
The stark reality is that neither ruling capitalist party is serious about addressing the climate emergency, and humanity will pay an unimaginable price.
Now comes news that the Biden administration has nominated Gibson Dunn’s Jennifer Rearden, a Chevron lawyer first chosen by Trump, to the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Melissa Quinn @MelissaQuinn97Among the nine nominees to the U.S. district courts announced by the WH: Jennifer Rochon to the SDNY, who clerked for former President Trump’s sister https://t.co/hCCblgl5x7
Rearden was part of the legal team that has relentlessly targeted attorney Steven Donziger. As the Intercept explains:
Donziger is one of the lawyers responsible for winning a $9.5 billion ruling in 2011 against Chevron in an Ecuadorian court over significant environmental damage that harmed Amazonian farmers and Indigenous communities. A Chevron lawyer promised, “We’re going to fight this until hell freezes over, and then we’ll fight it on the ice” — and the company hired Gibson Dunn to lead the charge.
The outrage among climate activists is justifiable.
Mark Joseph Stern @mjs_DCOne nominee stands out: Jennifer Rearden, a Gibson Dunn partner. Trump nominated Rearden, too, apparently on Gillibrand's recommendation. On her Senate questionnaire, she touted a case in which she defended housing discrimination against people with HIV. https://t.co/edSsb3NYuH https://t.co/QXbiYTc4Co
I reached out to Donziger, who sent me this statement:
Rearden and her partners at the Gibson Dunn firm were paid hundreds of millions of dollars by their client Chevron to unethically attack me and Indigenous Ecuadorians in the Amazon after we won a major pollution judgment over the oil giant's mass poisoning of ancestral lands. The fact that Biden is nominating her is profoundly disappointing and shows the near total control our fossil fuel industry has over the federal judiciary. Perhaps more than any other in recent history, I find this judicial appointment by Biden to be particularly repulsive. He also is putting Rearden on the same trial court in New York that allowed her firm to illegally detain me for 900 days on a misdemeanor, in retaliation for my successful work as a lawyer holding Chevron accountable for its toxic dumping in Ecuador.