Trump Nominates Openly Gay Lawyer to 9th Circuit Court of Appeals

Michael W. Chapman | October 31, 2018 | 4:40pm EDT
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President Trump holding
an LGBT rainbow flag.
(Getty Images.)

( -- President Donald J. Trump recently nominated the openly gay lawyer Patrick J. Bumatay to serve as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Curcuit, historically a liberal legal redoubt. The Ninth Circuit covers federal appeals for Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and a few other districts. 

Bumatay, 40, currently serves as assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of California, where he focuses primarily on prosecuting drug crimes.

"Patrick would make an excellent addition to the court," Gregory Angelo, president of Log Cabin Republicans, told The Blade, a homosexual newspaper.  "The historic nature of his nomination as an openly gay man adds an additional layer of prestige to what by all counts is an exceptional career in law."

U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Bumatay.  (YouTube)

Bumatay has worked at the Department of Justice and in the office of the deputy attorney general. He earned his B.A., cum laude, from Yale University and his J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a member of the National Filipino American Lawyers Association, the Tom Homann LGBT Law Association, and The Federalist Society.

The Tom Homann LGBT Association "is dedicated to the advancement of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues throughout California and the nation," states its website.  Its founder, Tom Homann, was a strong advocate for ensuring that explicit, hardcore pornography was available to the public and that topless bars were not not burdened by too many city rules, according to the website.  

Bumatay is Trump's second openly gay nominee to a federal bench. In June, Trump picked Mary M. Rowland to serve as a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Rowland has served a federal magistrate judge, as a law partner in a Chicago legal firm, and as an attorney in the Chicago office of the Federla Defender. 

Rowland, 57, earned her B.A. from the University of Michigan and her J.D. from the University of Chicago. Rowland is a member of the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago and has done pro bono work for Lambda Legal. She is "married" to Julie E. Justicz and they have two children. 

Judge Mary M. Rowland, right, and her "wife," Julie Justicz. (Facebook.) 

According to its website, the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago seeks to "promote the professional development and advancement of gay, bisexual, lesbian, and transgender legal professionals" and "advance the elimination of discrimination based upon actual or perceived homosexuality, bisexuality, transgender, transsexuality, gender-related identity, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, age, marital status, disability, or military status in the community at large through educational initiatives, training programs, and collaboration with organizations committed to the same."

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