Over Democratic Fury, Republicans Push Barrett to Brink of Affirmation
Partisan battles over the direction of the federal courts have increased rapidly in recent years as Congress no longer passed regular laws and both parties increasingly turned to the courts to implement their visions for the country.
But the Confirmation Wars seemed to hit a new, bitter low on Monday. For the first time in recent years, not a single member of the minority party, in this case the Democrats, was expected to vote for affirmation. A lone Democrat, Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, had assisted Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh in 2018.
Democrats ideologically reject Judge Barrett, but their opposition has little to do with the candidate herself. With more than 50 million votes already cast, the Democrats have insisted that the election winner be allowed to occupy the seat. You have accused Republicans of hypocrisy for rushing to occupy them despite prior assurances by several senior Republicans that if a vacancy opens in an election year, and in 2016 Republicans insisted that the voters have a say in who holds the office
Ms. Collins and Ms. Murkowski, two moderates who have often resisted their party, have shared these concerns, warning that the occupation of the seat will undermine the legitimacy of the court and Senate.
At 48 years old, Judge Barrett would be the youngest judiciary on the bench ready to shape the law for decades to come. As a judge on the Chicago Court of Appeals and a Notre Dame law professor, she was introduced as the heir to former Judge Antonin Scalia, who has been a prominent figure on the court’s conservative wing for decades. Judge Barrett worked for Justice Scalia and shares his strict legal philosophy.
In her confirmatory hearings earlier this month, Judge Barrett repeatedly described herself as a true independent with no “agenda”. However, neither party in the Senate appears to believe that it will be anything but a reliably conservative vote based on their scholarly writings and appeal decisions. If so, Judge Barrett would be the ideological opposite of her predecessor, Justice Ginsburg, who was the leader of the now downsized liberal wing of the court.
Democrats have used this prospect to strengthen their liberal base ahead of election day. In addition to their concerns about the fate of the Affordable Care Act, they have warned for weeks that Judge Barrett might be guilty of the Roe V Wade would repeal or repeal enshrined abortion rights.