WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) ─ Lawmakers grilled President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court pick Amy Coney Barrett Tuesday on issues ranging from abortion and healthcare to the upcoming election.
Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, said in a potential election dispute, Trump will expect Barrett to side with him.
When Leahy asked Barrett if she would recuse herself from any dispute that arises out of the upcoming election, Barrett said, “I think it would be a complete violation of independence of the judiciary for anyone to put a justice on the court as a means to pertaining a particular result.”
Instead of asking questions, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-Rhode Island, used his time to draw attention to campaigns to influence the high court.
“Something is not right around the court and dark money has a lot to do with special interests have a lot to do with it,” he said.
Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee continued to praise Barrett’s qualifications and worthiness to serve a lifetime appointment.
“If anybody in the country deserves to have a seat at the table based on the way they have lived their life and their capabilities in the law it is you judge,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, said.
Graham used his time to examine Barrett’s interpretation of the Constitution.
“You said you were an originalist, is that true, what does that mean in English?” he asked.
“I understand it to have the meaning that it had at the time people ratified it,” Barrett responded. “So that meaning doesn’t change over time and it’s not up to me to update it or infuse my own policy views into it.”
Barrett’s confirmation hearing will continue through Thursday.