On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told a press conference that the Senate will vote Monday on confirming President Trump’s nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, to the Supreme Court. He stated, “With regard to the Supreme Court justice, I think you’ve already written, we’ll be voting to confirm justice-to-be Barrett next Monday and I think that will be another signature accomplishment in our effort to put on the courts, the federal courts, men and women who believe in the quaint notion that maybe the job of the judge is to actually follow the law.”
“To set up a final vote on Monday, McConnell is expected to tee up Barrett’s nomination on Friday, a day after the Judiciary Committee is expected to sign off on her nomination. The Senate will then hold a procedural vote on Sunday. After that, senators could still debate her nomination for an additional 30 hours,” The Hill reported.
With the GOP holding 53 Senate seats, Coney Barrett’s confirmation is assured unless more than three GOP senators refuse to confirm her, which looks unlikely. The only GOP senator who has said she will not vote to confirm Coney Barrett is Susan Collins of Maine, who said she is against voting for a nominee before the presidential election. Other senators seen as possible swing votes included Mitt Romney of Utah, who stated he would vote for her, asserting:
After meeting with Judge Barrett and carefully reviewing her record and her testimony, I intend to vote in favor of her confirmation to the Supreme Court. She is impressive, and her distinguished legal and academic credentials make it clear that she is exceptionally well qualified to serve as our next Supreme Court justice. I am confident that she will faithfully apply the law and our Constitution, impartially and regardless of policy preferences.
Romney added, “My decision regarding a Supreme Court nomination is not the result of a subjective test of ‘fairness’ which, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. It is based on the immutable fairness of following the law, which in this case is the Constitution and precedent. The historical precedent of election year nominations is that the Senate generally does not confirm an opposing party’s nominee but does confirm a nominee of its own.”
Another possible swing vote, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, has not decided for or against the nomination.
McConnell said bluntly last week, “We have the votes.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, desperate to stop Barrett’s confirmation, tried to vote the Senate out of session Monday night by announcing that he would hold an emergency, near-midnight vote to send the Senate out of session until after the presidential election.
“Because our Republican colleagues have made such a mockery of the Supreme Court confirmation process, we are not going to have business as usual here in the Senate,” Schumer stated.
But as The Hill reported, “Republicans in a 48-42 vote pigeonholed Schumer’s request. The Senate is expected to come back into session on Tuesday.” McConnell gaveled the Senate back into session.
Author: Hank Berrien