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Trump nominates judge Amy Coney Barrett to Supreme Court

September 27, 2020 09:08 AM

Washington, Sep 26. 2020
United States President Donald Trump has nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, the president said Saturday, in a highly anticipated announcement that sets up a political showdown between Republicans and Democrats in the Senate.

Barrett, 48, is a constitutional scholar and conservative jurist who Trump named to the federal appeals bench in 2017.

Her nomination comes just over a week after the death of longtime Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a staunch liberal, on September 18.

Republican Senate leadership has vowed to move ahead with a confirmation vote before the November 3 presidential election. Democrats, meanwhile, have said whoever wins the election should pick the next justice.

“[It] should be a straightforward and prompt confirmation … It’s going to be very quick. I’m sure it’ll be extremely non-controversial, ” Trump said about the process.

Republicans have a 53-47 majority in the Senate, and with only two Republican senators opposing moving forward with the confirmation before the election, Democrats are expected to have little power to block the appointment.

If Barrett is confirmed, the party will swing the nine-member Supreme Court to a 6-3 conservative majority, likely shaping the US legal landscape for decades.

Later on Saturday, Trump said the Senate will likely open hearings on Barrett’s nomination on October 12, and he expected a full Senate vote before the November 3 election.

Barrett is expected to begin on Tuesday the traditional courtesy calls to individual senators, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell up first.

A law professor at the University of Notre Dame before her appointment to the federal judgeship in 2017, Barrett has conservative bona fides that are expected to energise the Republican base on social issues such as gun rights, abortion, and religion.

Democrats have also warned that should Barrett be appointed to the Supreme Court bench, former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act may be repealed.

“My fellow Americans, the president has nominated me to serve on the United States Supreme Court and that institution belongs to all of us, ” Barrett said at the event. “If confirmed, I would not assume that role for the sake of those in my own circle, and certainly not for my own sake, I would assume this role to serve you.

“I have no illusions that the road ahead of me will be easy, either for the short term, or the long haul, ” she added.

Barrett attended Notre Dame Law School and then clerked for conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia from 1998 to 1999.
- AJ /AP

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