By Liam Benedict
Following the death of Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the vacant spot on the Supreme Court has become a hotly contested issue. Donald Trump is trying to rapidly fill the spot since his career as President could be over soon.
In just a few days after RBG’s passing, Trump has already selected a new nominee: Amy Coney Barrett. He has already initiated the process of getting her onto the Supreme Court.
However, the rush appointing of this S.C. candidate is not only painfully hypocritical but could also have dangerous political consequences for every woman’s reproductive rights in America.
In every respect, Barrett is a perfect candidate for Trump. She is conservative, educated, heavily religious and of course, female.
Replacing a female judge on the Supreme Court with another woman is a smart political move. But it takes more than gender to become an S.C. judge.
Both Trump and Barrett say that the appointment has no ulterior motive and have moved forward with her designation because they believe she is the best alternative in replacing RBG.
CNN reported that Trump “argued that he had a constitutional duty to fill her seat.” But there are several hypocritical issues hidden behind this idea.
Following S.C. Judge Antonin Scalia’s death, Republicans in the Senate furiously blocked any S.C. judge Obama tried to pass. They claimed that that duty should fall on the next President, despite there being many months left in Obama’s previous term.
The hypocrisy is infuriating and quite frankly, shameful. But it is clear that the president and his supporters in Congress believe their actions to be for the best. This is an obvious rush job.
Unfortunately, the hasty nature of her appointment is not the most dangerous aspect of her nomination. Barrett is an openly devout Catholic and has faced doubts from both the public and from California Senator Dianne Feinstein, on whether or not she could avoid having her rulings biased by her religion.
The S.C. nominee has denied these allegations. However, whether this is true remains to be seen, but the early evidence does not look promising.
In my opinion, if Amy Barrett gets put on the Supreme Court, we will see harsh restrictions put on women’s access to abortions. Although this is slightly better than having women’s access taken away entirely, this would still greatly harm the reproductive rights of every woman.
Given how quintessential Roe v Wade is, completely repealing it would be a fairly difficult legal challenge and would face enormous public backlash. After all, CNN announced that “According to Pew Research Center, 59% of Christians do not want the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v Wade.” Rather ironic, considering how both Trump and Barrett have talked about the Supreme Court serving the will of the people.
However, if the S.C. simply places restrictions on abortion, it will be easier for the public to swallow, while also having the potential to drastically restrict women’s access to a procedure that has been viewed as a right for decades.
There are several reasons to believe that this will be the case. Barrett has expressed her disapproval of a woman’s right to choose to get an abortion in the past, and she has the voting record to prove it. “In 2018, she joined a dissent with fellow conservatives in an Indiana abortion dispute and referred to a provision that made it unlawful for physicians to perform an abortion because of the race, sex or disability of the fetus,” reports CNN.
President Donald Trump has also affirmed Barrett’s position on the issue of abortion. In a 2016 debate, President Trump said that he planned on appointing judges that would repeal Roe v Wade. “That will happen automatically, in my opinion, because I am putting pro-life justices on the court,” NPR detailed.
In the same NPR article, Barrett describes that she does not think that “the core case – Roe’s core holding that, you know, women have a right to an abortion – I don’t think that would change. But I think the question of whether people can get very late-term abortions, how many restrictions can be put on clinics – I think that would change.”
All this supports my conclusion, but for the moment though, this is all just speculation depending on if Barrett becomes an S.C. judge, but the outcome looks grim. It seems like this will just be one of the many things that we will have to watch this year with bated breath.
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