CFJ Applauds Choice of Barrett and Dispels Myths

September 26, 2020

The following is the statement of Committee for Justice president Curt Levey on the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court:

 

Washington, D.C. -- The Committee for Justice applauds President Trump for selecting Judge Barrett, a nominee who is committed to conservative judicial principles and whose intellect and character is widely admired across the legal community.

 

Conservatives are excited by Judge Barrett's nomination not because she will vote the "right" way on particular issues, but because she is committed to principles such as textualism and originalism, which require that our Constitution and other laws be interpreted as written, rather than twisted to serve the policy preferences of judges and other elites. Barrett's confirmation will go a long way to reassure Americans discouraged by a string of liberal, activist decisions at the end of the Supreme Court's last term.

 

During the confirmation process, Democrats and their allies will warn us that Judge Barrett's Catholic faith and her personal beliefs about the sanctity of life will cloud her ability to objectively interpret the law. But they will just be projecting onto Barrett the progressive belief that a "living" Constitution should reflect judges' personal values. Barrett has made it very clear that she will eschew such an approach. Consider Judge Barrett's handful of decisions in abortion-related cases, which have not always favored the pro-life side.

 

When Joe Biden complains bitterly about Judge Barrett's nomination, we will remind him that President Trump is keeping a campaign promise with Barrett's nomination. Not only did the President campaign on appointing exactly this kind of justice, but he released a list of his potential Supreme Court nominees in 2016 and again his year. Instead of complaining that Trump kept this promise, Biden should tell us what kind of justices he would nominate by releasing his own list of potential Supreme Court nominees.

 

Biden and other Democrats will try to portray Judge Barrett as someone the American people should be frightened of, as is their wont with Supreme Court nominees. But the politics of personal destruction will be a dangerous road for them to go down, both because Americans will be inspired by her story – raising seven children, including two Haitian adoptees, while reaching the heights of the legal profession – and will be reminded that Joe Biden pioneered the politicization of Supreme Court nominations when he chaired the hearings for Clarence Thomas and Robert Bork.

 

We are already hearing a variety of statements about the Barrett nomination that aren't true. For one, her confirmation will not result in a 6-3 conservative majority on the Court. If there were already a majority of five conservatives on the Court, the Left would not be panicking about adding a sixth.

 

It is also untrue that Barrett's confirmation will be rushed if completed by the election, which is 38 days away. Several recent Supreme Court justices were confirmed in comparable or shorter periods of time. In fact, in 1975, Justice Stevens was confirmed just 16 days after his nomination.

 

Finally, it is certainly not true that Barrett's confirmation in an election year would break with precedent. When. as now, the Senate and presidency are controlled by the same party, a new justice has been confirmed to fill an election year vacancy on the Supreme Court in 8 of 10 instances.

 

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