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Tony Perkins / Oct. 1, 2020

The World's Worst-Kept Secret: The Left Wants Court Legislators Instead of Judges

Why is the Left mobilizing to oppose the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court? The answer is simple: they want to "legislate" their radical left policies from the courts, and Judge Barrett stands in the way of their anti-constitutional plans.

Why is the Left mobilizing to oppose the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court? The answer is simple: they want to “legislate” their radical left policies from the courts, and Judge Barrett stands in the way of their anti-constitutional plans.

This reality was underscored by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Tuesday on Washington Watch. “[S]he’s a stunningly impressive person, a brilliant legal scholar and a teacher and the perfect nominee for the Supreme Court,” McConnell said. “They’re going to try to ignore her and suggest that her appointment threatens Obamacare. We think the nomination fight should be about the nominee, and so we intend to put her out front.”

What does Obamacare have to do with the nomination of a Supreme Court justice? According to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), it apparently has a lot to do with it, as he tellingly revealed last Saturday when he stated that “A vote for Judge Barrett is a vote to take away health care and its protections for over 130 million Americans who now have protections against pre-existing conditions.” One would be pardoned for thinking that Schumer must have been referring to a member of Congress, but he wasn’t. This blunt statement only further unmasks the Left’s desire for the court to rubber-stamp whatever policy initiatives they want.

The problem is, this philosophy is the antithesis of what the Constitution explicitly states regarding the role of the courts. As McConnell told me, “‘The job of the judge is to follow the law.’ That’s what Justice Scalia used to say. If you want to make policy, you ought to run for office. Gorsuch said, ‘We don’t wear red robes or blue robes. We wear black robes.’ Judge Barrett believes that that’s the role of a judge. The Democrats openly want to appoint people who act like legislators.”

McConnell also pointed out that this anti-constitutional philosophy from the Left is nothing new: “President Obama was really quite candid about it. He said he wanted to appoint judges who had ‘empathy.’ Think about that for a minute. If you are a litigant for whom the judge has empathy, you’re in good shape! But what if you aren’t? That’s not calling the balls and strikes. That’s not the traditional role of a judge. And the Democrats don’t want objective judges, they want partisan judges. President Obama appointed those kind of people, and if Joe Biden were to become president, he would appoint the same kinds of people.”

The Senate Majority leader further revealed that the Left is marshaling their forces to attack Judge Barrett for her faith. “Out on the Left, outside of the Senate, around the country, they’re drumming up this anti-religious argument already as a disqualifier for this wonderful nominee,” he said. “That’s what many, if not most, of the Left movement in this country does think is a disqualifying issue. They will not restrain themselves.” McConnell made it plain that Republicans will assemble a firm “challenge” to this obvious violation of the Constitution’s “no religious test” clause.

As far as the timing of the nomination process of Judge Barrett, McConnell was clear-cut: “[W]e are well within the boundaries of when the nominations are traditionally handled from nomination to confirmation … the chairman of the Judiciary Committee has indicated he’ll report the nominee out on the 22nd of October, and we’ll move forward.”


This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.

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