Brown Will Oppose Judge Nominees Who Worked To Strip Ohioans of Their Rights

Murphy Argued against Marriage Equality in Landmark Obergefell Case, Defended Ohio’s Voter Purge; Readler Supported Efforts to Allow Insurance Companies to Deny Coverage for People with Pre-Existing Conditions

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today announced that he remains opposed to the two Trump administration nominees – Chad A. Readler and Eric E. Murphy – to serve as Judges on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Readler and Murphy were nominated last year and were re-nominated this month. They are expected to be considered on the Senate Floor in the coming weeks. Brown said he will not support them, as the nominees actively worked to strip Ohioans of their rights and failed to answer for their records in meetings with the Senator. 

Brown made the decision in June of last year after meeting with Chad A. Readler and Eric E. Murphy, and remains committed to his opposition as the two nominees progress forward in the Senate. Brown examined their records over the course of several weeks. Their records include working to undermine the rights of Ohioans. 

As former Ohio Secretary of State, Senator Brown has always fought to protect Ohioans’ rights to vote. 

“I believe Ohio kids have the right to quality education, Ohio citizens have the right to vote, working families have the right to be protected from abuse by big banks, Ohioans have the right to marry the person they love, and no Ohioan should be denied health care because of a preexisting condition,” Brown said. “I cannot support nominees who have actively worked to strip Ohioans of their rights. Special interests already have armies of lobbyists and lawyers on their side, they don’t need judges in their pockets.” 


  • In June of last year, Chad Readler supported efforts to allow insurance companies to once again deny coverage or charge sky-high rates for people with pre-existing conditions.
    • More than 5 million Ohioans under age 65 have a pre-existing condition – which is nearly half the state.
    • More than 52 million Americans with pre-existing conditions are at risk because of the lawsuit Readler supported, according to reporting by the Washington Post. 
  • As a political appointee at the Department of Justice (DOJ), Readler signed a legal brief in support of a lawsuit by the state of Texas seeking to overturn pre-existing condition protections in the Affordable Care Act (Texas v Azar).  Readler signed the brief after three career attorneys with the DOJ refused. In fact, one resigned in response to the egregious action. HELP Committee Chairman, Lamar Alexander called the DOJ brief that Readler submitted, “as far-fetched as any he’s ever heard.” The very next day after he signed the brief, Readler was nominated by President Trump to serve as a Judge on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. 


  • As the State Solicitor of Ohio in the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, Eric Murphy argued against marriage equality in the landmark Obergefell case. He also defended Ohio’s voter purge. As former Ohio Secretary of State, Senator Brown has always fought to protect Ohioans’ rights to vote and has spoken out strongly against the voter purge. 
  • Murphy submitted a brief to the Supreme Court in the Obergefell marriage equality case in which he said that a finding of a constitutional right to marriage equality would be “disruptive” to our constitutional democracy. 
  • Murphy defended Ohio’s voter purge, along with strict voter ID laws, and fought to uphold restrictions on early voting in Ohio. He led the legal battle to outlaw “Golden Week” in Ohio, which allowed voters the opportunity to register and vote on the same day.