Barrett's Confirmation: First Female Conservative Justice Brings First Conservative Majority

October 26, 2020

The following is the statement of Committee for Justice president Curt Levey on tonight's expected confirmation of Judge Barrett to the Supreme Court:

 

We applaud tonight's confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, which is historic for at least two reasons. One, Barrett is the first female conservative justice in the nation's history, despite President Reagan's best intentions when he nominated Sandra Day O’Connor to the Court.

 

Two, for the first time since the 1930's, there is the potential for a true conservative majority on the Supreme Court. While Democrats and the media have long spoken of a "conservative" Court, their assumption that Justices Roberts and Kennedy were conservatives was a fiction. At very least, 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.

 

Those Americans owe a debt of gratitude to both President Trump, who acted quickly and decisively to fill the vacancy on the Court, and Senate Republicans, who rapidly made it clear that they had the will and the votes to confirm Judge Barrett. That all took courage given the enormous pressure from Democrats to leave the seat unfilled until next year and the erroneous charges that the timing of Barrett's nomination and confirmation was at odds with precedent.

 

Thanks to that courage, the Supreme Court will be able to function without the hobbling effect of 4-4 ties as important cases come before it in the coming months, including possible legal battles over next week's election. If the nation again faces litigation like Bush v. Gore, the last thing it needs is a 4-4 tie that could make resolving a constitutional crisis impossible.

 

Finally, Democrats need not worry that Barrett will be anything like their caricature of her – that is, a justice who allows her Catholic faith and personal beliefs to interfere with her objective interpretation of the law. Her commitment to textualism and originalism, which require that our Constitution and other laws be interpreted as written, is what makes her a conservative. Once Democrats realize that, perhaps their current infatuation with court packing will diminish.

 

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