Despite a full Democratic boycott of the process, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted on Thursday to approve the appointment of Justice Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court of the United States.
The move sets up a vote to confirm Barrett in the full Senate, which is expected to happen within the week – ensuring that President Donald Trump and the GOP Senate get a third justice in the High Court during his presidency.
The fact that Republicans shut down on sending Barrett to court just a month after the death of Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg opened that seat – and less than two weeks before the election – is a testament to the party’s steadfast desire to shape the federal justice system. by any means necessary.
But the chairman of the judiciary, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), gave a speech ahead of the vote that looked more like a bitter complaint about the current state of the Senate than a celebration of their success. With the 10 Democratic senators on the committee absent from the room and boycotting the vote – saying they would not legitimize a “sham process” – Graham replied, “We are not going to allow them to take over the committee.” They made the choice not to participate.
Graham went on to blame Democrats for the broken state of Senate standards for confirmations and court rules. He said when Democrats were the last to have a majority in the Senate, they chose the so-called “nuclear option” of eliminating the 60-vote threshold for lower court candidates, which Senate Republicans then used. as a rationale for removing that same threshold for Supreme Court candidates during Judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation in 2017.
“They started this,” Graham said. “Not me.”
Even Graham’s superficial praise of Barrett was accompanied by gunfire at the Liberals, which supporters of the judge accused of trafficking in personal attacks on his family and his Catholic faith in the process. No Democratic senator personally pursued Barrett during the proceedings, which Graham seemed to acknowledge. “My fellow Democrats haven’t gone too far, in my opinion,” he said. Although he still found the time to speak out against what he called the unfair treatment of Barrett.
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