Columns

'Do Your Job': Liberal Protesters Break Into Hatch Supreme Court Speech

Protesters from Generation Progress yelled “do your job” at Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) in the middle of his Friday speech about leaving the Supreme Court vacancy to the next president.

Hatch, president pro tempore of the Senate, started explaining why Senate Republicans are not going to confirm President Obama’s nominee to fill the opening left after Justice Antonin Scalia’s death.

“Do your job. Do your job,” the protesters repeatedly yelled while Hatch was speaking to the Federalist Society in Washington.

As shown in the video, Hatch attempted to engage the protesters in a discussion but they continued to chant, “do your job.”

Generation Progress, formerly known as Campus Progress, is affiliated with the liberal nonprofit organization Center for American Progress.

The signs the activists held up contained the logo of President Obama’s nonprofit group, Organizing For Action, as well as the hashtag, #DoYourJob.

As the activists were ushered out of the room, Hatch told the crowd, “I can take it. I’ve been through a lot of this, anyway.”

Hatch continued his remarks and listed some of the reasons the Senate is not taking action on the Supreme Court vacancy.

“The Senate has never confirmed a nominee to a Supreme Court vacancy that opened up late, this late, during the president’s time in office,” Hatch said after the protesters left the room.

Hatch said senators including Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Pat Leahy (D-Vt.), former Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) and former Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) have attempted to block Republican presidents’ Supreme Court nominees in the past.

“All that’s happening is the chickens are coming home to roost,” he said.

Hatch made a similar argument during a recent Senate floor speech.

“Then-Chairman Biden listed several factors that led him to this recommendation, and every one of them exists today,” Hatch said. “Then-Chairman Biden [Judiciary Committee] believed in 1992 that the Senate would be doing its job by deferring the confirmation process for a Supreme Court nominee.”

Following the Federalist Society event, Hatch told PJM that Democrats are only “tolerant” of others when they get their way.

“The other side, I hate to say it, but they don’t have the tolerance they preach they have and Democrats are very tolerant when they get their way. They are not too tolerant when they don’t,” Hatch said.

One of the protesters, who declined to provide her name, confirmed her affiliation with Generation Progress but said only some of the activists are on staff at the Center for American Progress while others are volunteers.

Watch the video on the next page.