Texas Court Pick Who Sees ‘Satan's Plan' in Transgender Kids Rated ‘qualified'

WASHINGTON -- The American Bar Association has issued a "qualified" rating to Jeff Mateer, the nominee for a lifetime federal judgeship in Texas who has described transgender children as part of "Satan's plan." That's the ABA's second-highest rating. At least two and as many as five lawyers on the ABA's 15-member screening committee voted to declare him "unqualified."President Donald Trump nominated Mateer on Sept. 7 for a vacancy in Sherman, in the Eastern District of Texas. Two weeks later, CNN uncovered his 2015 remarks on transgender children, and other remarks that year bemoaning state-level bans on conversion therapy -- controversial treatment intended to turn gay people straight. The Pan American Health Organization has deemed such therapy "a serious threat to the health" of those treated.Mateer, now the deputy to state attorney general Ken Paxton, made the comments as general counsel for First Liberty Institute, a conservative Plano-based law firm focused on promoting religious liberty. Gay rights advocates have denounced the nomination, and Democratic senators have vowed tough questioning if Mateer gets a confirmation hearing, saying he has shown he would not be impartial on important issues.Texas Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz have stood by the nominee, though Cornyn has emphasized that he didn't know about the remarks before recommending him to the White House.Legal scholars have called it highly unusual to pick a judge who has made such inflammatory remarks.  Continue reading...

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