Tong Blasts Attack On Justice McDonald

January 9, 2018

Rep. William Tong issued the following statement statement on GOP gubernatorial candidate Tim Herbst’s criticism of Supreme Court Justice Andrew McDonald, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s choice for chief justice:

“I am disgusted by Tim Herbst's bigoted attack on Justice Andrew McDonald. I know that Herbst is trying to ride a wave of hate and division to the governor’s mansion he so covets. But there is no place in Connecticut for Herbst’s dog-whistle tactics to try to smear a judicial nominee – a nominee for chief justice, no less – on the day his nomination was announced. I know what a hateful attack on Andrew McDonald looks like – this is not the first time. And it’s even uglier coming from a major Republican candidate for governor.

“As House chairman of the Judiciary Committee, I would normally reserve any extensive comments or questions until the nominee’s public hearing. It is also my job to preserve fairness and order in all proceedings before the Judiciary Committee. Anyone who appears before Judiciary knows how seriously I take that responsibility. Tim Herbst is clearly trying to poison the well and prejudice Justice McDonald’s nomination before it reaches the Judiciary Committee and the House and Senate for consideration. If Herbst will directly interfere with the proceedings of the General Assembly so unfairly and aggressively as a candidate, one can hardly fathom what he would do if he were governor.

“Justice McDonald has distinguished himself throughout his life and career. He graduated from Cornell University and the University of Connecticut Law School. He served Stamford honorably on its board of representatives, its board of finance and as its corporation counsel. He then served with great distinction as a state senator and the Senate chairman of the Judiciary Committee, followed by his work as general counsel to the governor. He is now a Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court. No lawyer in Connecticut is more qualified to serve as chief justice or in any legal role. Tim Herbst has none of these credentials, and as far as I can tell, is not qualified to do any of these jobs.”