Recently, President Biden officially gave a nomination out to one of the prominent prosecutors of Derek Chauvin, the police officer out of Minnesota that was convicted for the murder of George Floyd, for a recently opened position within the federal courts in Minnesota.
The Minnesota lawyer who issued both the opening and closing rebuttal statements for the Floyd case, Jerry W. Blackwell, was issued the nomination from Biden this past week for a spot as a United States District Judge for the District of Minnesota.
The nomination for Blackwell was highly lauded by various Minnesota Democrats including Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN), and state Attorney General Keith Ellison (D-MN).
“Jerry Blackwell is widely respected and loved within the Minnesota legal community,” stated Klobuchar. “His extensive trial experience — including the successful prosecution of the murder of George Floyd — makes him an excellent choice to be a U.S. District Court Judge. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to confirm him.”
Smith was excited about Blackwell’s “experience and commitment to equal justice will make him an excellent federal judge.” As noted by the Star Tribune, if Blackwell gets confirmed, it would be his first time as a judge.
The lawyer was originally placed onto the team that was prosecuting Derek Chauvin by Ellison, who has been quite effusive with his praise of Blackwell, labeling him as a “one-in-a-million lawyer.”
“He’s brilliant, thoughtful and fair, not to mention a pioneer among African American attorneys,” stated Ellison. “It’s hard to imagine how anyone could be better qualified for the federal bench.”
Additionally, Al Sharpton chimed in with his praise aimed at Biden for his choice to issue Blackwell a nomination.
Over the past few years, Blackwell seems to have issued several large donations of a political nature to various Democrats in Minnesota. A Jerry Blackwell in Minneapolis issued two $1,000 donations over to Governor Tim Walz (D-MN) in both 2018 and 2019, as reported by data sets obtained from Open Secrets. Additionally, a Jerry Blackwell in Minneapolis also issued a series of donations valued at $1,500 and then$2,500 to Keith Ellison.
The lawyer has, in addition, done some legal work for larger corporations such as General Mills and Walmart.
Blackwell could be a prominent figure for the court. as three judges seated had been previously nominated by Republican presidents and three more by Democratic presidents. Blackwell will serve as the seventh seat for the court.