On Monday the Senate Judiciary Committee began to consider the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Barrett herself was eloquent and inspiring. Democrats barely mentioned her, seemingly already giving up the fight against her nomination, and focused their fire on President Trump.
Democrats in the hearing mostly seem to be talking about anything but Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Speaks well of the Judge’s record and reputation.
— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) October 12, 2020
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham opened with, “This is probably not about persuading each other unless something really dramatic happens. All the Republicans will vote yes, all the Democrats will vote no…In my view, the person appearing for this committee is in the category of excellent, something the country should be proud of.”
Democrats disagree, “We are now just 22 days from the election, Mr. Chairman. Voting is underway in 40 states,” said Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, the ranking Democrat on the committee. “Senate Republicans are pressing forward, full speed ahead, to consolidate the court that will carry their policies forward with, I hope, some review for the will of the American people.” Her opening words were responsible compared to later Democrat babble.
But then Barrett took the stage and hit a home run with her sincere and intelligent presentation, “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.
“I was nine years old when Sandra Day O’Connor became the first woman to sit in this seat. She was a model of grace and dignity throughout her distinguished tenure on the court. When I was 21 years old and just beginning my career Ruth Bader Ginsburg sat in this seat. She told the committee, ‘What has become of me could only happen in America.’ I have been nominated to fill Justice Ginsburg’s seat, but no one will ever take her place.” She then referenced Justice Antonin Scalia, whom she served as a law clerk.
“I felt like I knew the justice before I ever met him, because I had read so many of his colorful, accessible opinions. More than the style of his writing, though, it was the content of Justice Scalia’s reasoning that shaped me. His judicial philosophy was straightforward: A judge must apply the law as written, not as the judge wishes it were. Sometimes that approach meant reaching results that he did not like.
“Justice Scalia taught me more than just law. He was devoted to his family, resolute in his beliefs, and fearless of criticism. And as I embarked on my own legal career, I resolved to maintain that same perspective…Courts have a vital responsibility to enforce the rule of law, which is critical to a free society. But courts are not designed to solve every problem or right every wrong in our public life.”
During Democrat statements, Diane Feinstein, strangely, mentioned a woman whose eyesight was failing when Mr. Obama signed Obamacare into law in 2010: “Within weeks she was able to have cataract surgery. This saved her life. She described her reaction when she was able to get coverage through the California health exchange following passage of the A.C.A. And let me quote, ‘It was like heaven. I cried.’” She cried, but those watching the hearing guffawed with derisive laughter at such a saccharine pitch.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Democrat of Rhode Island, said his constituents are “asking me to say no to this nominee mostly because they see her as a judicial torpedo aimed at their essential protections.” Uh no. Those doing the asking are his far left donors. Senator Amy Klobuchar and various others generally ignored Barrett and focused on Trump and the virus.
“Democrats’ remarks were beside the point and had nothing to do with confirming Judge Barrett or her judicial philosophy…I do not know what any of that has to do with why we are here today,” said Senator Ben Sasse, Republican of Nebraska. “A huge part of what we are doing here would be really confusing to eighth graders.” Though most eighth graders can probably find better edification and entertainment than a Senate hearing.