U.S. Senators respond to President Trump’s nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to U.S. Supreme Court

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT)– U.S. Senators were quick to respond Saturday to President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett for the U.S. Supreme Court. Judge Barrett would fill the seat vacated by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died on Sept. 18.

U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said in a statement that he expected to support her confirmation. He said on Twitter a few days after Justice Ginsburg’s passing that the Senate should vote on a nominee.

“Less than three years ago, Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed on a bipartisan basis as a judge on the Federal 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. I was pleased to vote for her then, and I expect to support her confirmation as a justice on the Supreme Court,” said Sen. Johnson.

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) said she would not vote for a nominee to a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court until after the election and the next President and new Senate have taken office. She also said this was the standard set by Republicans in the Senate when President Barack Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland. Republicans have said this is not the same because the same party controls the Senate and the White House.

“President Trump wants to overturn the Affordable Care Act completely and take away people’s health care and protections for pre-existing health conditions in the middle of a pandemic. Trump wants to overturn Roe v. Wade and have the government take away reproductive freedoms for women. Now he has nominated an activist judge to do what he wants, instead of giving the American people a voice on these important issues first,” said Sen. Baldwin, in a statement.

U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) said in a statement that she would oppose the nomination. She cited the judge’s previous stances and said Republicans are going forward with the nomination despite the precedent they set in 2016.

“Americans need Supreme Court Justices who will protect the rights of all Americans, and deliver equal justice for all. Judge Barrett’s record opposing the Affordable Care Act and reproductive rights for women shows that she is not qualified to safeguard our constitutional rights and liberties as a member of our nation’s highest court,” said Sen. Smith. 

U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said in a statement that she was disappointed that President Trump is not honoring Justice Ginsburg’s reported final wish of waiting until after the election to be replaced. She said she would “be guided in my decisions with her spirit in mind.”

“Confirming a new Supreme Court Justice is a critical decision that will impact the lives of every American — from our health care coverage, to workplace protections, voting rights, and more. With Americans already voting, the President is trying to jam through a nominee who has already voiced serious opposition to upholding the Affordable Care Act. One week after the election, the Supreme Court is set to consider the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act and its guarantee that insurance companies can’t throw Americans off their insurance if they have pre-existing conditions. This is a nominee who has repeatedly signaled her willingness to overturn important Supreme Court precedents,” said Sen. Klobuchar.