St. Louis Public Radio News
3:54 pm
Fri January 10, 2003

Missouri Democrats seek renomination of Ronnie White

Washington, D.C. – Two Missouri Democrats are asking President
Bush to re-nominate the black judge who was a key witness during Attorney General John Ashcroft's confirmation hearings.

Congressmen Dick Gephardt and William Lacy Clay are seeking appointment of Missouri Supreme Court Judge Ronnie White to the
eighth US Circuit Court of Appeals. It will have a vacancy in April.

Political observers say it's an apparent attempt to press the issue of race. White was nominated for a federal judgeship in 1997.

He was the first nominee since conservative Robert Bork in 1987 to be refused Senate confirmation.

Ashcroft was then Missouri senator, seeking re-election. During the confirmation hearing, the Republican called White "pro-criminal" because of his votes to overturn death penalty sentences.