Senate Will Vote Monday on Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s Confirmation

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 20, 2020   |   2:59PM   |   Washington, DC

The Senate will vote on the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to be the next Supreme Court justice on Monday, just 8 days before Americans head to the polls in the presidential election.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed the vote today and indicated the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on Barrett’s nomination on Thursday, where she is expected to be approved on a party-line vote.

“Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee and the entire country heard from one of the most impressive nominees for any public office in a long time,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. “Judge Amy Coney Barrett demonstrated that she has the deep legal expertise, dispassionate judicial temperament, and sheer intellectual horsepower that the American people deserve to have on their Supreme Court. Her nomination prompted an outpouring of praise from across academia, the legal profession, and, importantly, the political spectrum.

“Last week, our Committee colleagues saw why fellow legal scholars call Judge Barrett, quote, ‘a brilliant and conscientious lawyer who will analyze and decide cases in good faith,’ and say she is, quote, ‘tailor-made for this job,'” he said. “They heard firsthand why her former law clerks and students call her, quote, ‘a woman of unassailable integrity’ and, quote, ‘a role model for generations to come.’”

SIGN THE PETITION: Vote to Confirm Supreme Court Nominee Amy Coney Barrett

“They heard thoughtful answers that explained why the American Bar Association — an institution the Democratic Leader has called ‘the gold standard’ — deems Judge Barrett ‘well-qualified’ to sit on the Supreme Court. And they heard why the legal professionals behind that rating call her, quote, ‘a staggering academic mind.’ The Chair of the ABA’s Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary told the Committee directly that, quote, ‘in interviews with individuals in the legal profession and community who know Judge Barrett, whether for a few years or decades, not one person uttered a negative word about her character,'” McConnell continued.

“Of course, there’s another way you can tell that Judge Barrett is so impressive and so qualified. It’s the fact that the people who pre-committed to oppose her nomination have completely retreated from the merits. Virtually none of the politicians, pundits, or special interests who opposed Judge Barrett from the beginning have even tried to lay a finger on her qualifications or credentials,’ he added.

About the confirmation process itself, McConnell said the confirmation has been handled in light of Senate history.

“We have seen inaccurate claims that it would be abnormal for the Senate to fill this seat. We’ve seen bizarre, barely-disguised insinuations about the nominee’s religious faith — and now, this morning, improper press scrutiny of her children. We’ve heard Democrats try to take hostage our very institutions of government to stop this precedent-backed process from moving forward,” he said.

“But none of the distortions can even begin to cloud the incredible qualifications of this nominee. I look forward to the Judiciary Committee’s vote on Thursday. The full Senate will turn to Judge Barrett’s nomination as soon as it comes out of committee. I’ll be proud to vote to confirm this exceptional jurist,” the Senate Republican leader concluded.

The announcement of the vote comes as Judge Barrett finds herself with the support of a majority of the American people.

The new national survey from Gallup shows a 51% majority of Americans support federal judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the U.S. Supreme Court seat left vacant by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death last month. Just 46% disagree and 3% of Americans don’t have an opinion on her nomination.

During the confirmation hearings, Judge Barrett says she doesn’t consider the Roe v. Wade decision that allowed abortion on demand a “super-precedent” that can’t be overturned.

Judge Barrett said Roe is not in same category as the Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board of Education ruling, which declared segregated public schools unconstitutional because there is still a massive debate about whether Roe is legitimate.

Below are additional articles regarding today’s first day of hearings on Judge Barrett’s nomination.

In comments during her confirmation process, Judge Amy Coney Barrett also confirmed she is committed to the rule of law.

“I’m committed to the rule of law and the rule of the court,” she said. If I give off-the-cuff answers then I would be basically a legal pundit and I do not think we want judges to be legal pundit. I think we want judges to approach cases thoughtfully and with an open mind.”

Judge Amy Coney Barrett delivered her opening remarks to the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday and she made two major points.

First, she talked about the proper role of the courts, saying they are not supposed to make law and legislate from the bench. She also refused to back down to attacks from Senate Democrats on her faith, saying she strongly believes in prayer and thanked the many Americans who are prayer for her amid those attacks on her Christian faith.

“I believe in the power of prayer and it’s been uplifting that so many people have been praying for me,” Judge Barrett told members of the judicial panel.

“Nothing is more important to me, and I am so proud to have them behind me,” she added.

Before that, Judge Barrett discussed the proper role of the Supreme Court.

“Courts are not designed to solve every problem or right every wrong in our life,” she explained. “The policy decisions and value judgments of government must be made by the political branches elected by and accountable to the People. The public should not expect courts to do so, and courts should not try.”

“When I write an opinion resolving a case, I read every word from the perspective of the losing party. I ask myself how would I view the decision if one of my children was the party I was ruling against,” she went on to say. “Even though I would not like the result, would I understand that the decision was fairly reasoned and grounded in the law? That is the standard I set for myself in every case, and it is the standard I will follow as long as I am a judge on any court.”

The liberal American Bar Association has given President Donald Trump’s latest Supreme Court nominee its highest rating, issuing the rating on the opening day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearings in the Senate.

Last week, a new national poll showed Americans support the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett by double-digit margins.

A new Morning Consult poll shows Americans support Barrett on a 46-31% margin and that 15% margin of support is an increase from the polling firms last national survey in September following her nomination. That poll had Americans backing Barrett 37-34%, a resulting 12% increase from the 3% margin previously.

“Democrats are losing the Supreme Court messaging war, new polling indicates, with support for Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation trending in the GOP’s direction,” the polling firm indicated. “Nearly half (46 percent) of voters in an Oct. 2-4 Morning Consult/Politico poll said the Senate should confirm Barrett — up 9 percentage points since President Donald Trump announced her nomination on Sept. 26 — as more voters say the chamber should consider her elevation to the high court as soon as possible, regardless of who wins next month’s election.”

Seventy-seven percent of GOP voters back Barrett’s confirmation, up 6 points from late last month. Among independents, the share who said she should be confirmed increased 8 points, to 36 percent, while the share of Democratic voters who said she should be confirmed increased 10 points, to 24 percent.

Even Democratic voters have softened their opposition to Barrett’s confirmation: The latest survey found 59 percent said the Senate should wait to see who wins the election, compared with 79 percent who said in the wake of Ginsburg’s death that the election winner should pick the next justice.

It’s not as if Barrett’s nomination is flying completely under the radar. Though 1 in 5 voters initially heard “a lot” about it, that share had doubled just a few days later following the first presidential debate.

Barrett, a law professor at the University of Notre Dame and judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, believes life begins at conception and has noted how both pro-life and pro-abortion legal experts have criticized Roe v. Wade as a bad decision. Barrett criticized the ruling for “ignit[ing] a national controversy” through judicial fiat.

Though her judicial rulings on abortion are few, she did rule in support of two Indiana pro-life laws during her time on the Seventh Circuit. She also has made several statements about the value of babies in the womb. According to the Law and Crime blog, Barrett signed a public letter in 2015 that emphasized “the value of human life from conception to natural death.”

Judge Amy Barrett was number one on the Supreme Court wish list for most pro-life voters and she was also the first potential high court nominee to get an in-person meeting with President Donald Trump. That’s not a surprising considering the president previous said he was “saving her” for an appointment to the Supreme Court should Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg retire or pass away.

Barrett, a mother of seven, was a former law clerk to Justice Antonin Scalia. Like Scalia, Barrett describes herself as an “originalist” judge.

When it comes to abortion cases, Barrett has been on the pro-life side. She voted in 2016 to allow a hearing on a pro-life law from the state of Indiana that requires abortion centers to offer a proper burial or cremation for babies they kill in abortions. And in 2019, she voted to allow a hearing on another Indiana pro-life law allowing parents to be notified when their teenage daughter is considering an abortion so they can help her make a better decision for her and her baby.