New Episode of Ms.’s On The Issues With Michele Goodwin Podcast: Biden Promised a Black Woman Supreme Court Nominee. Now What?


On the Issues with Michele Goodwin is a popular, issues and policy-focused podcast featuring feminist analysis, insightful conversations and exciting guests. This is the first podcast from Ms. magazine, a legacy feminist publication. In each bi-weekly episode, host Dr. Michele Goodwin and special guests will tackle the most compelling issues of our times, centering feminist concerns about rebuilding our nation and advancing the promise of equality. 

A new episode—Biden Promised a Black Woman Supreme Court Nominee. Now What?—is available now on Apple PodcastsSpotify and

In this episode, Dr. Goodwin is joined by Zinelle October, Franita Tolson, Steve Vladeck, and Danielle Holley-Walker to discuss what Justice Breyer’s retirement means for the Supreme Court and dig deep on President Biden’s promise to nominate a Black woman on the Supreme Court. Who are the most likely candidates? What credentials and experience would they bring to the role? What distinguishes the speculated short-list candidates from each other? If confirmed, would a Biden nominee have power to influence the Supreme Court?   

You can find a full transcript of the episode here, as well as a few excerpts below:

“In one year, President Biden has already put more black women on the federal bench than any Republican president ever. And he’s about to pass the combined total of every Republican president ever.” — Steve Vladeck

“Currently, 70% of my law students are Black women. So when we talk about what it means in this moment, in a law school atmosphere like mine, it means my students for the first time ever seeing a Supreme Court justice who looks like them.” — Danielle Holley-Walker

“I do want to emphasize that there are many exceptionally qualified Black women lawyers both within and outside of the federal judiciary. And the press has thrown out a lot of names. And from our perspective, at least, we’re celebrating, we’re taking a step back to celebrate that it will be a Black woman. We’ll be happy and very excited to see what the ultimate choice that the President makes.” — Zinelle October

“If you look at the list of people who are being considered for this position, they are exceptional women, and they are exceptional even though they often face the prospect of not being recognized for being exceptional. They do the work because the work needs to be done.” — Franita Tolson

This episode is the first in the “On the Issues” Road to Confirmation series, which will follow the nomination and confirmation process of President Biden’s nominee to replace Justice Stephen Breyer on the U.S. Supreme Court. Dr. Goodwin will take listeners through each step of the confirmation process as it happens in real time, with commentary and analysis from experts.  

Meet the Host of On the Issues: Dr. Michele Goodwin is a frequent contributor to Ms. Magazine and on She is a Chancellor’s Professor at the University of California, Irvine and also serves on the executive committee and national board of the ACLU. Dr. Goodwin is a prolific author and an elected member of the American Law Institute, as well as an elected Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and the Hastings Center. Her most recent book, Policing The Womb: Invisible Women and The Criminalization of Motherhood is described as a “must read.”

About Ms. Magazine: Co-founded by Gloria Steinem in 1972 and published by the Feminist Majority Foundation since 2001, Ms. magazine has been a trusted, popular source for feminist news and information in print and online for nearly 50 years. Ms.’s time-honored traditions of an emphasis on in-depth investigative reporting and feminist political analysis have never been more relevant, bringing a new generation of writers and readers together to share news, analysis, research and strategies for fighting back and moving forward, for shaping the future.


If you would like more information on the On the Issues with Michele Goodwin podcast, or to schedule an interview with Host and Executive Producer Michele Goodwin or Executive Producer & Ms. Executive Editor Katherine Spillar, please email