Statement of Derrick Johnson on Postponement of Vote on Thomas Farr

November 29, 2018

“The NAACP is encouraged by the Senate’s decision today to postpone the vote on Thomas Farr’s nomination to the Eastern District of North Carolina. The Senate does not have the votes to confirm Farr, and it hopefully it will never will.

This week, a smoking gun was uncovered demonstrating that Farr himself coordinated voter suppression activities in a U.S. Senate race:

“Farr was the primary coordinator of the 1984 ‘ballot security’ program conducted by the 1984 Helms for Senate Committee.  He coordinated several ‘ballot security’ activities in 1984, including a postcard mailing to voters in predominantly black precincts which was designed to serve as a basis to challenge voters on election day.”  Footnote 7, DOJ Memo, June 19, 1991

This revelation is singularly disqualifying.

We already knew Thomas Farr as architect of the nation’s worst voter suppression law that served as model for states seeking to disenfranchise Black people.  He supported and praised white supremacists and segregationists. Now, we have confirmation from George H.W. Bush’s Justice Department that Farr directly interfered with voting rights of African Americans.

Unfettered participation in our democracy without regard to race is a foundational principle.  Thomas Farr’s record is anathema to our Constitution and our judiciary.

He should never be confirmed.”