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Redefining the confirmation criteria for a Supreme Court Justice

On 12 October 2020, I got up and turned a TV on to watch the Senate Judiciary Committee start a hearing to consider the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Senator Lindsey Graham, chair of the committee, started by announcing that each member would make an opening statement. Hearing that, I turned the TV off because I had no doubt that I knew what was going to be said in those opening comments. News reports proved me right. I tuned back a few hours later to hear Judge Barrett’s opening statement and the introduction of her by Patricia O’Hara, former Dean of the University of Notre Dame Law School.  

What I heard and saw in those couple of hours of watching convinced me that Democrats have, on their side, changed the criteria for the confirmation of Supreme Court Justices. I managed to tolerate another few hours of watching on 13 and 14 October. Be assured I do not have animus toward Democrats; I just find their actions and intentions dangerous to this country and totally motivated by, through almost any means necessary, the achievement of power.

It is my understanding that the role of the Supreme Court is to interpret and apply the Constitution along with other laws; not to make law or policy. Setting policy and making law is the responsibility of Congress. Senator Ted Cruz made this point very well on 10/14 in an exchange with Judge Barrett. Cruz explained that he favors school choice, but does expect the Supreme Court to find a way to mandate this arrangement; Congress should act on it.

With regard to the role to be played by Congress in considering the nomination of Supreme Court Justices, it is to confirm that nominees are qualified to serve on the Court; not whether they will decide cases in a certain way. This is where I contend Democrats on the Judiciary Committee have changed the rules. I heard nothing from them by way of questioning Judge Barrett’s qualifications. Their whole argument was that, based on her academic writings and public involvement, they contend she will vote to overturn Roe v. Wade (protects a woman’s right to an abortion) and to declare the Affordable Care Act (Obama Care) unconstitutional.

Democrats accuse President Trump of nominating individuals for the Court who will vote as he desires. With no proof of this allegation against Trump, Democrats oppose Barrett, not because they see her as unqualified, but because they contend she will vote contrary to the desires of Democrats on some key issues. This position staked out by Democrats is exactly what they allege and condemn in President Trump.

I totally agree with those who say Democrats seek to have the Supreme Court put policies and laws in place that House and Senate Democrats do not have sufficient public support to properly institute through legislation. This condition poses a serious threat to America’s future.

22 October 2020: On this date, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to send Judge Barrett’s nomination to the full Senate for action. Interesting.y, all Democrat members of this committee boycotted the vote. None of them showed up. As a tax-paying citizen of this country, I would like to hear some reasoned explanation from Democrats as to what positive impact they expect this boycott to produce for the American people. If you are reading this post and can answer the question, please submit your response.

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