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Circuit Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s former law clerk, Matteo Godi, has been caught editing her Wikipedia page to “paint her in a more favorable light for a liberal audience” while altering those of her Supreme Court vacancy competitors to make them look worse.
Godi was identified under the handle of “H2rty” on Wikipedia by an anonymous group of the judge’s other former law clerks, according to Politico on Friday. He evidently has edited her page “as a matter of course” for a number of years.
Godi is from Italy and is a Yale Law graduate. He clerked for Jackson from October 2019 to October 2020.
On January 30 and February 1, changes were made to the potential Supreme Court nominee’s Wikipedia page involving two rulings against the Trump administration that were later overturned. The section that was modified involved Jackson’s most famous decision which required former White House counsel Don McGahn to obey a congressional subpoena involving then-President Donald Trump.
SCOOP: Former law clerk to #SCOTUS contender Ketanji Brown Jackson tweaked Wikipedia pages of Jackson’s rivals, in apparent bid to make them seem less appealing to liberal audience https://t.co/MrISoWP5F2
— Josh Gerstein (@joshgerstein) February 4, 2022
The change was subtle. The New York Times pointed out that the judge’s “slow pace” had helped former President Donald Trump “run out the clock on the congressional oversight effort” prior to the 2020 election. The blame was transferred from Jackson to the D.C. Circuit Court on the page.
Previously, the page stated the ruling was “subsequently” appealed “and was only resolved when … McGahn testified,” while the updated version emphasizes that Jackson’s ruling was “immediately” appealed, and “it took the full D.C. Circuit nine months to affirm part of Jackson’s decision.” The case “remained pending before the court of appeals,” when McGahn agreed with the Biden administration to testify behind closed doors.
A reference to Jackson serving on an advisory board of “a Baptist school” was also cut out.
“Ahead of her confirmation hearing, ‘Bloomberg Law’ reported that conservative activists were pointing to certain decisions by Jackson that had been reversed on appeal as a ‘potential blemish on her record,’ in order ‘to tarnish her so she won’t get picked for the Supreme Court,” was also added to the page.
Politico called the edits a “pattern” of changes to “paint her in a more favorable light for a liberal audience.” They allegedly began on January 28, a day after Justice Stephen Breyer announced his retirement.
When law clerks break bad
— GuessIHaveToGetMyOwnDonutsHat (@Popehat) February 5, 2022
President Joe Biden has vowed to nominate a black woman to fill Breyer’s vacancy and Jackson is a top contender for the spot. Biden claims he will announce his nominee before the end of February.
Jackson was selected by Biden in 2012 to serve as his nominee to fill the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals seat of Attorney General Merrick Garland. Now, she has reportedly made his shortlist of SCOTUS nominees.
Godi, who was an anonymous editor, reportedly made more than 20 edits to seven Wikipedia pages of potential Supreme Court nominees over the last week. The edits include South Carolina Federal DistrictCcourt Judge J. Michelle Childs, California Supreme Court Justice Leondra Kruger, District Court Judge Wilhelmina Wright, Circuit Judge Tiffany Cunningham, attorney Arianna J. Freeman, and attorney Holly Thomas, “to make them potentially less appealing to a left-leaning audience” according to Politico.
How *helpful* of that former clerk. I’m sure KBJ is very appreciative to be associated with such a helpful clerk.
— StillTheEchoes (@dillyblue) February 5, 2022
The law clerks who threw Godi under the bus assert they had no knowledge of any edits made on pages of rival SCOTUS contenders.
Godi also clerked for Judge Guido Calabresi of the Second Circuit and was a visiting lecturer at Yale Law School last fall, where he taught a course on Torts and Regulation.
While attending law school, Godi worked for NAACP LDF, Equal Justice Under Law, and the D.C. Public Defender Service.
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