Story at a glance

  • President Biden nominated on Thursday Vermont Supreme Court Justice Beth Robinson for a seat in the U.S. Court of Appeals for Second Circuit.
  • “Justice Robinson has been a steadfast public servant for the people of Vermont and has served admirably on the Vermont Supreme Court," Vermont Gov. Phil Scott said.
  • Robinson, who served on the state court since 2011, co-founded the Vermont Freedom to Marry Task Force and successfully advocated for full marriage equality in the state in 2009.

A Vermont Supreme Court justice could soon make history as the first LGBTQ+ woman to serve on a federal circuit court.

President Biden nominated on Thursday state justice Beth Robinson for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, which hears cases from Connecticut, New York and Vermont. The nomination follows the death of 2nd Circuit Judge Peter Hall, who passed away in March after serving on the court for 17 years, according to USA Today

Robinson, who served on the state court since 2011, co-founded the Vermont Freedom to Marry Task Force and successfully advocated for full marriage equality in the state in 2009. Robinson’s appointment requires approval from the U.S. Senate. 


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Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) praised the judicial nominee in a press release following the announcement from the White House. 

“Justice Robinson has been a steadfast public servant for the people of Vermont and has served admirably on the Vermont Supreme Court," Scott said in a news release. 

"She will make a great addition to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, bringing the Vermont values of commitment to justice and equality, fairness, and Freedom & Unity to the bench."

Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy likewise applauded Robinson’s appointment in a statement, calling her a tireless champion for equal rights and equal justice in the mold of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“It is no exaggeration to say that Beth Robinson helped Vermont — and America — more fully realize the meaning of equality under the law,” Leahy said.   

“Beth’s successes provided a blueprint for advocates in other states to achieve more equality across the country,” Leahy added. “As a result, Beth has widely — and rightfully — been hailed as one of our nation’s most important pioneers in the cause of LGBTQ rights.”


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Published on Aug 05, 2021