Senator Ben Cardin (AP Photo)
Cardin Statement on the Confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court
“I am not convinced that Judge Barrett would administer impartial justice and guarantee equal protection of the law and equal justice under the law. So I must vote against her nomination.”
“Never has a justice been confirmed after at least 60 million Americans have already cast their votes for the next president.”
“The actions of my Republican colleagues have done a tragic disservice to the legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) today released the following statement in response to Republican confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court of the United States.
“I am gravely concerned that the rushed and sham process the Senate has used to advance Judge Barrett’s nomination will undermine the public’s faith in the independence and legitimacy of the Supreme Court as a fair and impartial body. Were we to have followed historical precedent and traditions of the Senate, we clearly should have followed the ‘McConnell Rule’ adopted after the death of Justice Scalia and let the American people pick the next president and Senate before considering the next Supreme Court justice. This would have allowed the American people to have their voices heard, rather than choosing to ignore the will of the majority.
“Never in modern times has the Senate taken up a Supreme Court nomination so close to an election, and never has a justice been confirmed after at least 60 million Americans have already cast their votes for the next president. The actions of my Republican colleagues have done a tragic disservice to the legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and will undercut the rights for which she fought throughout her entire career.
“Most immediately, the nomination of Judge Barrett was another attempt to undercut that landmark Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. President Trump has promised to nominate judges to the Supreme Court who will ‘terminate’ our health care law.
“In both major cases brought against the ACA, Judge Barrett criticized the Supreme Court for upholding its constitutionality. She publicly criticized Chief Justice John Roberts for upholding the law, and said that if the Supreme Court read the statute the way she does, they would have had to ‘invalidate’ it.
“With Judge Barrett’s confirmation, the risks become real for 133 million Americans with preexisting conditions, who could be once again be denied health insurance coverage or face high out-of-pocket costs for essential health services and medical treatments. Those struck by COVID-19 would be added to that list. Upwards of 20 million Americans could lose their health insurance coverage – in the midst of a devastating pandemic. Yearly and lifetime coverage limits on things like cancer treatments and prescription drug costs could also return.
“This alone is unconscionable, yet the effects of Judge Barrett’s confirmation will not be confined to simply impacting your health coverage. Her shadow will be cast much farther over our lives, potentially reshaping women’s rights and reproductive freedoms, the freedom to marry, climate change policy, gun safety, voting rights, campaign finance, and so much more.
“After reviewing her full record, statements, and committee testimony, I am not convinced that Judge Barrett would administer impartial justice and guarantee equal protection of the law and equal justice under the law. So I therefore must vote against her nomination.”