Supreme Court confirmation process continues; Sen. Whitehouse calling Coney Barrett a “judicial torpedo”

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Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is sworn in during a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Monday, Oct. 12, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, Pool

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WLNE) — Amy Coney Barrett’s fast-track Supreme Court confirmation goes before the Senate Judiciary Committee for a second day.

With just three weeks until the election, the controversial nomination hearing continues on Capitol Hill. Coney Barrett spelled out her judicial philosophy with hope she will replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

On Monday, all 22 senators read their opening statements as the hearing went on for five hours.

While Senate Republicans review this hearing as a done deal, Democrats are questioning the timing and hot button issues like Roe v. Wade, gay rights and the Affordable Cares Act.

During Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse’s opening statement, he called Coney Barrett a judicial torpedo.

“The only problem with their feigned shock is that they’re the ones who’ve said that that’s what they’re doing,” Senator Whitehouse said. “It’s in the Republican Party platform, to and I’m quoting here, ‘reverse the Obamacare cases.’ Trump has said he’s using his nominations to terminate the Affordable Care Act.”

On the floor, Senator Whitehouse also profiled a woman named Laura from Smithfield, Rhode Island. He says Laura had a kidney transplant and is battling a pre-existing condition that’s protected under the Affordable Cares Act.

“Laura tells me, ‘without the ACA and protections for people with pre-existing conditions, insurance premiums, if I’m able to get insurance at all with be financially out of reach for me and I will no longer be able to afford the health monitoring, labs, specialist appointments and treatment that are essential for my kidney to function’,” Senator Whitehouse said.

In Laura’s letter, she also talked about insurance premiums, saying they would be out of reach for her and her immunosuppressant medication alone would cost over $40,000 annually.

“Laura’s not alone,” Senator Whitehouse said. “We’re in the midst of a relentless, deadly virus that Trump has botched that touches nearly everyone in this country.”

On Tuesday, Senators will be given 30 minutes each to ask Amy Coney Barrett questions as they hope to get a better understanding of her judicial philosophy.

“Justice Scalia taught me more than just law,” Judge Amy Coney Barrett said. “He was devoted to his family, resolute in his beliefs, and fearless of criticism. And as I embarked on my own legal career, I resolved to maintain that same perspective.”

If confirmed, Judge Amy Coney Barrett would tilt the ideological balance of the nation’s highest court, making it a 6-3 conservative majority.

Categories: News, Politics, Rhode Island