The U.S. Senate voted to confirm President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett. Trump nominated Barrett to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Every Democrat voted against Barrett, while every Republican except Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) voted for her. The vote came down to 52-48.
Democrats have excoriated President Trump and the Republican Senate for nominating Barrett and holding a confirmation vote despite the looming election.
However, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) explained that it is not unprecedented to confirm Supreme Court justices shortly before or even after a presidential election, even with a lame-duck president. On the contrary, it would have been unprecedented (at least since 1888) for the Republican Senate — elected to check a Democratic president — to confirm Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee in 2016.
Watch the confirmation below.
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 26, 2020
As PJ Media’s Matt Margolis reported, Justice Clarence Thomas — a consummate originalist — will administer Amy Coney Barrett’s oath.
Barrett becomes Trump’s third Supreme Court justice, after Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. She has pledged to follow the original public meaning of the Constitution, rather than unilaterally amending the Constitution in the manner of Roe v. Wade (1973) and Obergefell v. Hodges (2015), cases in which the Supreme Court struck down state laws on abortion and marriage in order to establish a constitutional “right” to abortion and same-sex marriage, respectively.
Many irrationally fear that if Roe and Obergefell are overturned, abortion will be illegal across the country and same-sex marriage will also be illegal. On the contrary, reversing these rulings would only allow the states to make their own laws.
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Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.