President Nominates Goodwin Liu to Federal Appeals Court

February 24, 2010
President Obama has nominated Goodwin Liu, associate dean and law professor at UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law and the former chair of the ACS Board, to a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The Los Angeles Times reported that "if confirmed, he could be the only full time Asian American judge on a federal appellate court."

Liu (pictured) is the co-author of Keeping Faith with the Constitution, released last year by ACS and set to be published this summer by Oxford University Press. Keeping Faith articulates a vision of the Constitution and an approach to interpretation that is faithful to the words of the document and at the same time has enabled the Constitution to retain its relevance for each new generation of Americans. The Los Angeles Times noted that the book "discusses the shortcomings of ‘orginalism,' a conservative legal theory maintaining that the Constitution should be interpreted based on its 18th century framers'

In a press statement on the nominations of Liu and Judge Robert N. Chatigny for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, President Obama said, "Goodwin Liu and Robert Chatigny have proven themselves to be not only first-rate legal minds but faithful public servants."

In a statement, ACS Executive Director Caroline Fredrickson said:

Goodwin first became involved in ACS while he was in a law firm representing businesses and pro bono clients as a litigator. Although he began as a regular member of our D.C. chapter, his passion for the law, tremendous judgment and outstanding temperament made him stand out as a leader. He joined ACS's board of directors, and once again those qualities were recognized by his colleagues, who voted to make him our Chair. We will miss Goodwin, and we congratulate him on this great honor, which he so richly deserves.

The Los Angeles Times noted that Liu has drawn support across the political spectrum, including Clint Bolick, director of the conservative Goldwater Institute's constitutional litigation arm. Bolick told the Times, "Having reviewed several of his academic writings, I find ... Liu to exhibit fresh, independent thinking and intellectual honesty."