Politics Replacing RBG with a Woman like Amy Coney Barrett Is Beyond Tokenism. It's an Affront | Opinion
'The dogma lives loudly': Amy Coney Barrett emerges as top contender for Trump Supreme Court pick
Judge Amy Coney Barrett, whose Catholic faith came under fire from Senate Democrats three years ago, has emerged as the favorite as President Trump seeks to fill the Supreme Court vacancy following the death of liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. © Provided by Washington Examiner Barrett, 48, a Notre Dame Law School graduate and former clerk for conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, is currently a judge on the U.S.
The death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a terrible loss for her family, her friends, and her country. Her likely replacement threatens to compound the loss by reversing her judicial legacy, especially her ardent defense of sexual and reproductive rights.
On Saturday, Trump is expected to announce his choice for the bench, stipulating that it will be a woman. Amy Coney Barrett, criticized for her dangerously antiquated views on reproductive issues, is widely believed to be the frontrunner. With ghoulish irony, Trump reportedly told his inner circle, "I'm saving her for Ginsburg."
Trump is expected to nominate Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court
The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit justice is a favorite of the religious right.News outlets, including CNN, PBS Newshour, and CBS, reported Friday evening that the president is expected to announce Saturday that he has chosen to nominate Barrett to the nation’s highest court — though the pick isn’t yet final until Trump makes a formal nomination.
It's a particular insult to women, as well as to Justice Ginsberg's memory, for Trump to propose such a candidate to replace her and claim he's doing it to advance women's equality. If he succeeds in appointing such a staunch opponent of reproductive rights to the Court, he'll advance his own agenda of turning women's rights back 50 years. Appointing Barrett could well result in the overturning of Roe v. Wade, and the assault on sexual and reproductive rights will not stop there.
When Trump released a list of 20 new additions to his original list of candidates for the Supreme Court, the litmus test was once again opposition to abortion and hostility towards women's reproductive health and rights. That's why Senators Tom Cotton and Ted Cruz found their names on it. Cotton stated he was "honored" by the announcement and Cruz said he was "grateful for the president's confidence in [him] and for [Trump's] leadership in nominating principled constitutionalists to the federal bench."
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But it is Barrett who appears to have the inside track. After she paid the White House a couple of visits this week, Trump reportedly said that she "will be well received by his people, " by which he means his anti-choice base.
Barrett is one of the few women President Trump has appointed to a federal judgeship, and she is dedicated to advancing the anti-choice agenda. There is virtually no doubt, legal experts say, that she will vote to overturn Roe v. Wade, which she has condemned as an "erroneous decision." She also signed a statement claiming the ACA's birth control benefit was "an assault on religious liberty." Several women's rights groups vehemently opposed her nomination to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. And LGTBQ+ rights advocates warned that Barrett's religious views on marriage could come into conflict with the constitutional right to marriage equality.
A woman is impaled by a corn rake, but do her fatal injuries add up to murder?
A farmer's wife is found in a shed on their Iowa farm with a corn rake lodged in her back. The rake has just four tines – so why does she have six puncture wounds?It was a fall day in 2018 when Amy Mullis was found grievously injured on her family farm in Earlville, Iowa. She was face down with a corn rake sticking out of her back. The farm tool had four steel tines, but doctors who examined her found six puncture wounds.
Justice Ginsburg knew better than anyone what was at stake. Days before her death, she told her granddaughter, "My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed." But Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell also have a fervent wish: to repeal and replace Justice Ginsburg's judicial legacy.
In what will go down as one of the most breathtakingly hypocritical moves in modern political history, without even pausing to pay respect to the late Justice, McConnell declared that Trump's nominee to fill Justice Ginsberg's seat will receive a full Senate vote this year. In 2016 when President Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court bench nine months before the election, McConnell refused to even hold a hearing. What McConnell really cares about is not fulfilling the Senate's duty to advise and consent on judicial nominees; it's stacking the federal courts with conservative jurists however he can, especially when it comes to filling vacancies on the Supreme Court.
3 cases that hint at Amy Coney Barrett's views on policing
The issue of policing has become central to the upcoming election. Here's how Amy Coney Barrett has previously ruled on related cases. President Donald Trump nominated Barrett, 48, on Saturday, a week after the death of longtime Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, 87. Republicans have said they intend to hold a vote on Barrett, but Democrats decried a potential vote, saying whoever wins the election in November should nominate the next justice.
Trump's attacks on reproductive rights and health have been many and varied, but packing the Supreme Court with anti-choice Justices will be his most far-reaching tactic by far. His first two appointments to the Court, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, are already rolling back the clock on reproductive health and rights. This summer, they voted with the minority to let stand a state abortion restriction that would likely have forced the closure of the last abortion clinic in Louisiana. They also voted with the majority to allow employers to opt out of providing birth control coverage for their employees by claiming a moral or a religious objection. But if putting Gorsuch and Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court has been detrimental to sexual and reproductive health and rights, adding a third Trump appointee to the Court such as Amy Coney Barrett could be catastrophic.
Our hearts are breaking. Even as we mourn the loss of a champion who fought tirelessly for equality, social justice, and sexual and reproductive rights, we'll have to face the affront to her life's work that appointing a woman like Barrett as her replacement represents. Now she's gone, we must carry on Justice Ginsberg's fight ourselves. May she rest in peace, and may we not rest until we have secured her legacy.
Bridget Kelly is research director of the Population Institute, a nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. that supports reproductive health and rights.
The views expressed in this article are the author's own.
Supreme Court to rule on Arizona's ban against third-party ballot collection .
While the state's policies are in place for November, the high court's action will come later and thus will have no effect on the presidential race.The high court also will decide whether the state can continue to discard ballots cast at the wrong precinct.