At MSJDN, we live to bust the, “I thought I was the only one!” myth, a misconception held by many of our members before we discovered more than 800 of our colleagues. The support we’ve offered each other through our private discussion boards and job banks has brought comfort to many in our community (including yours truly!).
But all this support does little to change perceptions held by the community at large about the drawbacks of hiring military spouses. All employers see is our frequent moves, regular job changes, and gaps in our resume. Just as important as supporting each other through this military life, we need each other in our professional spheres. But how do we do that when each of our careers is unique, and need specific, special attention?
The Answer? Blow the perception of military spouses as dependents out of the water. Promote and publicize our successful professional military spouses.
Enter Patricia Millett. Supreme Court litigator and military spouse. Black belt. Mom. We profiled Pattie in a special preview of next month’s Bars & Stripes newsletter. She’s been nominated for one of three vacant spots on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, frequently referred to as the second highest court in the land.
But Pattie’s nomination has been delayed in the combative, partisan atmosphere in DC. Do the words “sequestration” and “shutdown” ring a bell?
The same way we support each other through a deployment or a last minute PCS, military spouses have a chance to support Pattie in her journey to the federal bench. And you can do one better than a casserole, you can call your Senator and tell them why Pattie deserves an up or down vote.
- Why Pattie? Her accolades have landed her the endorsements of seven past Solicitors General (the government’s lawyer in Supreme Court cases), both Republican and Democrat, as well as a litany of military leaders. Remarkable among her support is its bipartisan nature — her admirers come from both sides of the aisle.
- Why milspouse support? No one knows better than us the difficulties of trying to cobble a career with a loved one in a war zone. Pattie not only maintained a career, she’s made it to the top of her profession. On paper, there’s no doubt of her keen intellect and work ethic, but what’s not obvious from her resume is she accomplished it all while navigating the hardships of being married to an active duty and reserve Sailor. Supporting Pattie is supporting the best of our community.
- Why the D.C. Circuit? The D.C. Circuit is the most important civilian court for the military and military families. It has jurisdiction and hears cases concerning the Department of Defense and the Veterans Administration, as well as countless other matters implicating the military, national security, and defense, including the Guantanamo Bay litigation. It is imperative that a court with such impact on the military and veterans have on its bench a military spouse.
- Why now? Pattie was nominated in June and was approved by the Judiciary Committee in August. Just one more vote awaits, from the full Senate — but partisan objections are delaying this vote. A key vote is happening soon, time is short to show support. With quick action, military spouses can con communicate that support of Pattie send a strong signal of the Senate’s continued support for our military families.
- What can I do? Call your Senator, tell them support for Pattie is support for our military families. Call your Senators, especially if you’re in these states: Kentucky, Georgia, Alaska, Tennessee, Vermont. By supporting her confirmation, Senators would send a strong signal of the their continued support for, and faith in, our military service members and their families.
The calculus is simple: a vote for Pattie is a vote for military families. Call/Write/Tweet today, and let’s #ConfirmPattie!
Sen. Saxby Chambliss
Sen. Mark Kirk
Sen. Kelly Ayotte
Phone: (202) 224-3324
Sen. Jeff Flake
Sen. Lindsey Graham
Phone: (202) 224-5972
Sen. Johnny Isakson