WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump on Saturday nominated Judge Amy Connie Barrett to the Supreme Court, hoping that a dramatic change in the federal judiciary would resonate with a generation and give him the much needed impetus for his re-election effort.
Barrett, a former clerk to the late Justice Antonin Scalia, said he was “really humbled” by the nomination and quickly aligned himself with Scalia’s legitimate conservative approach, saying his “legal philosophy was also mine”.
Barrett, 48, was joined by her husband and seven children at the Rose Garden as guests watched. If confirmed by the Senate, she will fill the seat vacated by liberal icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg, which is the sharpest ideological swing since Clarence Thomas replaced Justice Turgood Marshall nearly three decades ago?
She is the sixth judge in a nine-member court appointed by a Republican president, and a third in office for the first time.
Trump hailed Barrett as “a woman of great intellect and temperament” who said she had studied her record closely before being picked.
“I saw and I studied, and you deserve so great,” Barrett stood next to him.
Republican senators lined up for Barrett’s confirmation ahead of the Nov. 3 election, as they aim to gain traditional gains in the federal judiciary before the transition. At the same time, Trump hopes the nomination will encourage his supporters to avoid Democrat Joe Biden.
For Trump, who won 2016 in support of white evangelicals on the promise to fill the Scalia seat with the traditional, in a way the latest nomination brings his first term full circle. Prior to Ginsburg’s death, Trump had certified more than 200 federal judges who had fulfilled the goal of generations of conservative legal activists.
“This is my third nomination after Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanagh, and I am very proud of it,” Trump told the Rose Garden.
Trump joked that the forthcoming verification process should be “light” and “very controversial”, although it could be anything. As early elections are already underway, no court nominee has been considered close to the previous presidential election. She urged lawmakers to speed up her nomination and urge Democrats to “stay away from personal and partisan attacks.”
In 2016, Republicans blocked President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court to fill an election year gap, saying voters should be on a lifetime appointment. Senate Republicans say they will move forward this time around, arguing that the conditions under which the White House and Senate are controlled by the same party are now different.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate would vote on Barrett’s confirmation in the coming weeks, saying Trump could not “make a good decision” in nominating an appellate court judge. The trial is set to begin on October 12.
Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have warned that a vote confirming Barrett to the High Court would reduce the affordability protection law. Despite the outrageous outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic, the president once again “put American health care in cross-shares,” Schumer said.
Ginsberg is scheduled to be buried next week with her husband at Arlington National Cemetery. On Friday, she was the first woman to sleep in the state at the Capitol, and mourners came to the Supreme Court two days earlier.
The set design at the Rose Garden, hung between colonies with large American flags, looked like a model for the White House decoration process when President Bill Clinton nominated Ginsburg in 1993.
Recognizing that the flags were still being lowered in recognition of Ginsberg’s death, Barrett said, “She must remember who came before me.” Although they have different legal philosophies, Barrett Ginsburg hailed her as a trailblazer for her friendship with women and Scalia, “she has won the admiration of women nationwide and indeed worldwide.”
Within hours of Ginsburg’s death, Trump made it clear that he would nominate one woman for the seat and then said he was considering five candidates to volunteer. But Barrett was an early admirer and the only person who met with Trump.
Barrett has been a judge since 2017, when Trump nominated her to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. But as a longtime professor of law at the University of Notre Dame, she had already established herself as a loyal conservative in Scolia’s mold, a clerk in the late 1990s.
Not getting his law degree from an Ivy League school is the only justice in the current court. The current eight judges are either Harvard or Yale.
In her bitter 2017 Court of Appeal affidavit after allegations that Democrats were attacking her Catholic faith, the strong conservative Trump became increasingly aware. The president interviewed her in 2018 for a vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy, but Trump eventually chose Brett Kavanagh.
Trump and his political allies are itching for another fight over Barrett’s faith, a political failure that could backfire on Democrats. In particular, while Catholic voters in Pennsylvania are seen as a key population in a state of swing, Biden is also trying to recapture Catholicism.
While Democrats appear weak to stop Barrett’s confirmation in the GOP-controlled Senate, they want to use the process to undermine Trump’s chances of re-election.
The Barrett nomination can count on abortion, which has divided most Americans for almost half a century. Rowe V, the 1973 landmark that legalized abortion. The idea of manipulating or removing Wade has been with animated activists in both parties for decades. Now, with a decisive change in the ideological makeup of the court, Democrats hope that their voters will fall into the draw because of their frustration with Barrett Pick.
Trump has also largely embraced the High Court – on which he has had a tremendous hand in redesigning it — as an insurance policy in the upcoming election.
The rise in mail, absenteeism and early voting by the coronavirus pandemic has already led to the chaos of the election lawsuit, and both Trump and Biden have mobilized forces of lawyers to continue the fight after the vote count begins. Trump has been outspoken about naming the court the Third Justice for the court fight to decide who will be sworn in on January 20, 2021.
“I think it will end in the Supreme Court,” Trump said Wednesday, “and I think it’s important that we have nine judges.”
Meanwhile, outside conservative groups plan to spend more than $ 25 million in support of Trump and his nominee. To help certify the Judicial Crisis Network Barrett, American First Policy has formed an alliance with Susan B. Anthony List, Club for Growth and Group Catholic Vote, and Trump’s campaign is expected to include a nomination in the upcoming announcements.