Nate Jackson / October 16, 2020

ACB Hearings: Wrap-Up and a Looming Scheme

Democrats may have one more obstruction card up their sleeves.

It’s all over but the crying. Democrats have little recourse to prevent the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. That doesn’t mean they won’t try.

In 2013, then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid nuked the filibuster for judicial nominees, though Democrats retained it for the Supreme Court. “You’ll regret this,” then Minority Leader Mitch McConnell warned, “and you may regret this a lot sooner than you think.”

That “sooner than you think” came in 2017, when Democrats chose to filibuster Neil Gorsuch because they were bitter that Republicans had refused to even hold hearings for Merrick Garland the previous year. Sure enough, Majority Leader McConnell gave Democrats a dose of their own medicine, eliminating the filibuster even for SCOTUS nominees.

The move left Democrats unable to obstruct Gorsuch, and it later ensured they were unsuccessful in their attempt to character assassinate Brett Kavanaugh in 2018. Similarly, they’re without much hope for stopping Barrett now. “This goose is pretty much cooked,” lamented Cory Booker.

Politics ain’t bean bag, and both parties have escalated the fight over the Supreme Court. Then again, we say “both parties,” but the fault clearly lies with Democrats. Not only have they treated GOP nominees with grotesque contempt ever since defeating Robert Bork in 1987, but they have politicized the Court’s decisions and filled the federal bench with activist judges to do what Democrats cannot do at the ballot box or the halls of Congress.

During four days of hearings, Barrett displayed her stellar qualifications and amiable temperament — even eliciting mild praise from Democrats like Dianne Feinstein (her dogmatically anti-religious hot-mic moment notwithstanding). Yet Democrats have to be able to tell their radical base they did something to stop Barrett.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has just the thing: Democrats might once again break precedent and trash basic decency in the Senate by refusing to supply a quorum for a vote. Why? Barrett’s nomination, he says, is “illegitimate, dangerous, and unpopular.” Wrong, wrong, and wrong.

But will the scheme work? Power Line’s Paul Mirengoff doesn’t think so. “A quorum in the full Senate is 51 members,” he explains. “In the Judiciary Committee it’s nine members including two from the minority party.” Even so, “Republicans could work around this pretty easily.”

The GOP can either approve a discharge resolution relieving the Judiciary Committee of its authority on moving the nomination forward, or the committee itself can change its quorum rules. Schumer likely hopes to accomplish two things: First, push Republicans to make hardball moves that he can whine about to the Democrats’ Leftmedia super PAC to generate sympathy. Second, lay the groundwork for justifying packing the court next year by insisting that Republicans have unfairly “stolen two Supreme Court seats.”

That may work with Schumer’s base, but again, Barrett has proven herself thoroughly likable, and the spectacle of Democrats taking their ball and going home in order to prevent the Judiciary Committee from even voting on a qualified woman would be tough to spin, even with the might of the mainstream media behind them.

Finally, we’ll leave you with a quote from Barrett herself on the first day of hearings: “I interpret the Constitution as a law. That I interpret its text as text. And I understand it to have the meaning that it had at the time people ratified it. So that meaning doesn’t change over time, and it isn’t up to me to update or infuse my own policy views into it.” That, plain and simple, is a justice’s job. We look forward to seeing her do it.

Our coverage on:

Day One
Day Two
Day Three

Start a conversation using these share links:

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!


“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2022 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.