Conservative Group Fighting Clinton Judicial Nominee

By Jim Burns | July 7, 2008 | 8:26 PM EDT

( - The conservative Eagle Forum is fighting hard to defeat one of President Clinton's judicial nominees, criticizing Bonnie Campbell, who's never held a previous position as a judge, for her pro-abortion stance, feminist ties and "extremist" opposition to Christianity.

Campbell is Clinton's nominee to fill a vacancy on the Eighth US Circuit Court of Appeals, the court that hears cases from Arkansas. However, the US Senate Judiciary Committee, according to a spokesperson, still hasn't scheduled a hearing on the nomination.

Virginia Armstrong, Eagle Forum's "Court Alert" Chairman said the conservative group is concerned about what she called "nominees to these next to the highest courts. The Circuit Courts are becoming more and more powerful as the courts of last resort, as the caseloads grow in the federal judiciary."

Eagle Forum says Campbell has a lack of judicial experience and a flawed view of the constitution's commerce clause. "We're particularly concerned that people go to those (circuit) courts, that have no judicial experience to speak of and that's a real problem with Bonnie Campbell," Armstrong said.

"Campbell's career has been in executive positions (director of the Violence Against Women Office); she is totally lacking in adequate judicial experience," according to the Eagle Forum alert.

"In her position as the VAW (Violence Against Women) office director, she actively promoted the use of the civil rights provision of the Violence Against Women Act," according to Eagle Forum. "The US Supreme Court recently struck down the civil rights provision as being too expansive an exercise of Congressional commerce power."

Campbell's "feminist ties" also irritate the Eagle Forum. "Campbell was a delegate to the 1995 UN (United Nations) Conference on Women in Beijing, China, one of the most pro-feminist aggregations ever convened."

Campbell also has an "extremist opposition to Christianity", according to the Eagle Forum.

"Campbell has described religious conservatives as extremists, fundamentalist, anti-tax groups." She told Iowa public school educators, "I hate to call them Christian because I am a Christian, and I hate to call them religious, because they're not, so I'll call them the radical right."

Campbell had no comment on the Eagle Forum allegations, according to a spokesperson in her office.

In 1995, President Clinton appointed Campbell as the Director of the Justice Department's Violence Against Women office. The President's Interagency Council on Women called Campbell, "a nationally recognized leader in the effort to combat domestic violence, sexual assault, and other violent crimes against women."

In 1997, Time Magazine named Campbell "one of the 25 most influential people in America." The magazine said in an article, "Bonnie Campbell is the force behind a grass- roots shift in the way Americans view the victims and perhaps more important, the perpetrators of crimes against women."

Campbell was elected as Iowa's attorney general in 1990, the only woman to have held that office. Before being elected attorney general, she practiced law in Des Moines. She earned her Bachelor and Law degrees from Drake University.