Tag: nominee

‘It’s not the law of Amy’: SCOTUS nominee Barrett faces Dem skepticism on Day 2 of hearings

WASHINGTON — Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett batted away Democrats’ skeptical questions Tuesday on abortion, health care and a possible disputed-election fight over transferring presidential power, insisting in a long and lively confirmation hearing she would bring no personal agenda to the court but decide cases “as they come.”

The 48-year-old appellate court judge declared her conservative views with often colloquial language, but refused many specifics. She declined to say whether she would recuse herself from any election-related cases involving President Donald Trump, who nominated her to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and is pressing to have her confirmed before the the Nov. 3 election.

“Judges can’t just wake up one day and say I have an agenda — I like guns, I hate guns, I like abortion, I hate abortion — and walk in like a royal queen and impose their will on the world,” Barrett told the Senate Judiciary Committee during its second day of hearings.

“It’s not the law of Amy,” she said. “It’s the law of the American people.”

Barrett returned to a Capitol Hill mostly locked down with COVID-19 protocols, the mood quickly shifting to a more confrontational tone from opening day. She was grilled by Democrats strongly opposed to Trump’s nominee yet unable to stop her. Excited by the prospect of a judge aligned with the late Antonin Scalia, Trump’s Republican allies are rushing ahead to install a 6-3 conservative court majority for years to come.

The president seemed pleased with her performance. “I think Amy’s doing incredibly well,” he said at the White House departing for a campaign rally.

Trump has said he wants a justice seated for any disputes arising from his heated election with Democrat Joe Biden, but Barret testified she has not spoken to Trump or his team about election cases. Pressed by panel Democrats, she skipped past questions about ensuring the date of the election or preventing voter intimidation, both set in federal law, and the peaceful transfer of presidential power. She declined to commit to recusing herself from any post-election cases without first consulting the other justices.

“I can’t offer an opinion on recusal without short-circuiting that entire process,” she said.

A frustrated Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the panel, all but implored the nominee to be more specific about how she would handle landmark abortion cases, including Roe v. Wade and the follow-up Pennsylvania case Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which confirmed it in large part.

“It’s distressing not to get a good answer,” Feinstein told the judge.

Barrett was unmoved. “I don’t have an agenda to try to overrule Casey,” she said. “I have an agenda to stick to the rule of law and decide cases as they come.”

She later declined to characterize the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion as a “super-precedent” that must not be overturned.

Democrats had no such reticence.

Let’s not make any mistake about it,” said California Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democratic

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Explainer: How Trump’s Supreme Court nominee applies the law to LGBT+ rights

NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – President Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court has alarmed many LGBT+ advocates, who fear the appointment of another conservative judge would jeopardise the rights of gay and trans people.

FILE PHOTO: Rainbow flags fly at Rockefeller Center in midtown Manhattan in support of the LGBT community, prior to the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, in New York City, New York, U.S., June 26, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Segar

If confirmed, Barrett, who has described conservative judge Antonin Scalia as her mentor, would push the country’s highest court to a 6-3 conservative majority.

At 48, she could serve for decades in the lifetime job, potentially leaving a lasting conservative legacy.

“Confirming Barrett will drag America backwards,” Sarah Kate Ellis, head of the LGBT+ advocacy group GLAAD, said in a statement when she was nominated.

As the U.S. Senate on Monday opened a four-day confirmation hearing, here is a look at Barrett’s record on LGBT+ rights.

DEFENDING DISSENT ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE

In a 2016 lecture, Barrett defended the justices who dissented against the landmark 2015 ruling that legalized gay marriage nationwide, known as Obergefell v. Hodges.

She suggested that the ruling should have been decided by legislators not the court.

“Those who want same-sex marriage, you have every right to lobby in state legislatures to make that happen, but the dissent’s view was that it wasn’t for the court to decide,” Barrett said then.

“So I think Obergefell, and what we’re talking about for the future of the court, it’s really a who decides question,” she said.

Criticism of the gay marriage ruling was revived this month when Justice Clarence Thomas and Justice Samuel Alito said the ruling continues to have “ruinous consequences” for religious liberty.

LBGT+ advocacy groups took those comments as a worrying sign for same-sex marriage and gay rights on a court moving further rightward.

BATHROOM ACCESS FOR TRANS PEOPLE

Barrett has also argued against extending Title IX protections, federal civil rights laws barring Americans from discrimination on the basis of sex, to trans Americans.

In the same 2016 lecture, Barrett said that applying Title IX to fight against policies banning trans people from using the bathroom that aligns with their gender identity would be a “strain” of the text.

“When Title IX was enacted, it’s pretty clear that no one, including the Congress that enacted that statute, would have dreamed of that result, at that time,” Barrett said, referring to the extension of the rights to trans Americans.

Instead, Barrett said that the debate should be decided by U.S. Congress.

“Maybe things have changed so that we should change Title IX, maybe those arguing in favor of this kind of transgender bathroom access are right. That’s a public policy debate to have.”

RELIGIOUS EXEMPTIONS

Later this year, the court will decide on a major religious rights dispute involving the city of Philadelphia’s refusal to place children for foster care with a Catholic agency that bars same-sex couples

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Supreme Court nominee vows to ‘apply law as written’

Amy Coney Barrett
Judge Barrett said policy decisions were for elected politicians, not Supreme Court justices

US President Donald Trump’s pick for a Supreme Court vacancy will tell senators that she will judge legal cases impartially “whatever my own preferences might be”.

Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative jurist, faces a four-day confirmation hearing in the Senate next week.

If approved, Judge Barrett will replace liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died recently at 87.

Judge Barrett’s nomination for the role has proved politically controversial.

It was announced by Mr Trump at the end of September, just weeks before he takes on Democratic rival Joe Biden in November’s presidential election.

Should Judge Barrett’s nomination be confirmed, conservative-leaning justices will hold a 6-3 majority on the Supreme Court, shifting its ideological balance for potentially decades to come.

The court’s nine justices serve lifetime appointments, and their rulings can shape public policy on everything from gun and voting rights to abortion and campaign finance.

Democrats fear Judge Barrett’s successful nomination would favour Republicans in politically sensitive cases that reach the Supreme Court.

Given this, Democrats have urged Judge Barrett to not take part in any cases involving the outcome of November’s presidential election and an upcoming challenge to a health law known as Obamacare.

They argue that, because she was nominated by President Trump during an election campaign, it would not be ethical for her to make a judgement on such cases.

US President Donald Trump introduces Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court
If confirmed, Judge Barrett would be the third Supreme Court justice appointed by President Trump

Democrats have also raised concerns about an outbreak of coronavirus among senior politicians, including President Trump and Republicans involved in Judge Barrett’s nomination hearing.

But keen to press ahead with the nomination, Republican leaders have rejected Democratic pleas to delay the hearing.

Judge Barrett is the third justice to be nominated by the current Republican president, after Neil Gorsuch in 2017 and Brett Kavanaugh in 2018.

What will Judge Barrett tell senators in her opening remarks?

In what is effectively an interview for the job, the confirmation hearing will give Judge Barrett a chance to explain her legal philosophy and qualifications for the lifetime post.

In prepared remarks released ahead of the hearing, Judge Barrett thanked President Trump for “entrusting me with this profound responsibility”, which she called the “honour of a lifetime”.

In the speech, Judge Barrett, a 48-year-old mother of seven, will speak of the importance of her family and how her parents prepared her for a “life of service, principle, faith, and love”.

Judge Barrett will pay tribute to judges she has worked with, including former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Justice Scalia’s reasoning “shaped me”, Judge Barrett will say. “His judicial philosophy was straightforward: A judge must apply the law as written, not as the judge wishes it were.”

Judge Barrett will say she has “resolved to maintain that same perspective” in her legal career.

Who is Amy Coney Barrett?

  • favoured by social conservatives due to record on issues like abortion and gay

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Amy Coney Barrett: Supreme Court nominee vows to ‘apply law as written’

Amy Coney BarrettImage copyright
Reuters

Image caption

Judge Barrett said policy decisions were for elected politicians, not Supreme Court justices

US President Donald Trump’s pick for a Supreme Court vacancy will tell senators that she will judge legal cases impartially “whatever my own preferences might be”.

Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative jurist, faces a four-day confirmation hearing in the Senate next week.

If approved, Judge Barrett will replace liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died recently at 87.

Judge Barrett’s nomination for the role has proved politically controversial.

It was announced by Mr Trump at the end of September, just weeks before he takes on Democratic rival Joe Biden in November’s presidential election.

Should Judge Barrett’s nomination be confirmed, conservative-leaning justices will hold a 6-3 majority on the Supreme Court, shifting its ideological balance for potentially decades to come.

  • Trump nominates conservative favourite for Supreme Court
  • The big issues Trump’s Supreme Court handled

The court’s nine justices serve lifetime appointments, and their rulings can shape public policy on everything from gun and voting rights to abortion and campaign finance.

Democrats fear Judge Barrett’s successful nomination would favour Republicans in politically sensitive cases that reach the Supreme Court.

Given this, Democrats have urged Judge Barrett to not take part in any cases involving the outcome of November’s presidential election and an upcoming challenge to a health law known as Obamacare.

They argue that, because she was nominated by President Trump during an election campaign, it would not be ethical for her to make a judgement on such cases.

Judge Barrett is the third justice to be nominated by the current Republican president, after Neil Gorsuch in 2017 and Brett Kavanaugh in 2018.

What will Judge Barrett tell senators in her opening remarks?

In what is effectively an interview for the job, the confirmation hearing will give Judge Barrett a chance to explain her legal philosophy and qualifications for the lifetime post.

In prepared remarks released ahead of the hearing, Judge Barrett thanked President Trump for “entrusting me with this profound responsibility”, which she called the “honour of a lifetime”.

In the speech, Judge Barrett, a 48-year-old mother of seven, will speak of the importance of her family and how her parents prepared her for a “life of service, principle, faith, and love”.

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Media captionAmy Coney Barrett: “I will meet the challenge with both humility and courage”

Judge Barrett will pay tribute to judges she has worked with, including former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Justice Scalia’s reasoning “shaped me”, Judge Barrett will say. “His judicial philosophy was straightforward: A judge must apply the law as written, not as the judge wishes it were.”

Judge Barrett will say it is for elected politicians to make “policy decisions and value judgments”, not Supreme Court justices.

“In every case, I have carefully considered the arguments presented by the parties, discussed the issues with my colleagues on the court, and done my utmost to reach the result required by

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Supreme Court nominee Barrett pledges fealty to law as Senate hearing looms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett will tell senators in her high-stakes confirmation hearing this week that she will approach cases based on the law, not her personal views, as Democrats urged her to step aside on an upcoming challenge to the Obamacare law and any potential election-related disputes.

A four-day Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing for the conservative appellate court judge is set to begin on Monday, a key step before a final full Senate vote by the end of October on her nomination for a lifetime job on the court.

In a copy of her prepared remarks released on Sunday, Barrett said that as a judge she seeks to “reach the result required by the law, whatever my own preferences might be.”

Barrett, 48, said in the statement that it will be an “honor of a lifetime” to serve alongside the current eight justices and explained how she approaches cases.

“When I write an opinion resolving a case, I read every word from the perspective of the losing party. I ask myself how would I view the decision if one of my children was the party I was ruling against,” she wrote.

Barrett’s confirmation to replace the late liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg would create a 6-3 conservative majority on the court that could lead to rulings rolling back abortion rights, expanding religious and gun rights, and upholding Republican-backed voting restrictions, among other issues.

Democratic opposition to Barrett on policy issues has focused on her possible role in deciding a case before the Supreme Court in which Trump and Republican-led states are seeking to invalidate the Affordable Care Act (ACA) healthcare law, often called Obamacare.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said on Sunday that Barrett should, if confirmed, step aside from the case, which is scheduled to be argued at the court on Nov. 10.

“She doesn’t come unbiased and that’s why she should recuse herself,” he said.

A key Obamacare provision that would be thrown out if the court strikes down the law bars insurance companies from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. Democrats have criticized Trump for seeking to end Obamacare protections amid a pandemic that has killed more than 210,000 Americans.

Schumer also said Barrett should recuse herself from any cases involving the presidential election because of statements made by Trump in which the president has said the court is likely to have election cases. Trump, who is running for reelection against Democrat Joe Biden, has indicated he would expect the court to rule in his favor if Barrett is confirmed.

Under existing rules, individual justices have the final say on whether they should recuse.

The Senate’s Republican leaders rejected Democratic pleas to delay the hearing after two Republican Judiciary Committee members and Trump himself tested positive for the coronavirus in the days following his Sept. 26 White House ceremony announcing Barrett, 48, as his nominee.

Barrett is scheduled to deliver her opening statement to the committee on Monday, with

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U.S. Supreme Court nominee Barrett pledges to follow law, not personal views

FILE PHOTO: Judge Amy Coney Barrett meets with United States Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO.), not pictured, at the United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., U.S., October 1, 2020. Demetrius Freeman/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Amy Coney Barrett, President Donald Trump’s pick for a U.S. Supreme Court vacancy, said she will rule based on the law, not her personal views, in prepared remarks issued on Sunday ahead of her Senate confirmation hearing this week.

Barrett, a conservative appeals court judge, said that in her current job she has “done my utmost to reach the result required by the law, whatever my own preferences might be.”

A devout Catholic who has a record of opposing abortion rights, Barrett is likely to be probed by Senate Democrats on that issue in particular. If Barrett is confirmed to the position by the Republican-controlled Senate, the court would have a 6-3 conservative majority. Conservative activists hope the court will overturn the 1973 ruling, Roe v. Wade, that legalized abortion nationwide.

Trump nominated Barrett to replace liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died last month.

Barrett said in the statement that it will be an “honor of a lifetime” to serve alongside the current eight justices and explained how she approaches cases.

“When I write an opinion resolving a case, I read every word from the perspective of the losing party. I ask myself how would I view the decision if one of my children was the party I was ruling against,” she wrote.

Barrett, 48, who has seven children, would be the fifth woman to serve on the court. Before Trump appointed her to the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Barrett was a professor at Notre Dame Law School in Indiana.

Reporting by Steve Holland and Lawrence Hurley, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien and Lisa Shumaker

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