Senate Judiciary Committee member claims ‘there is no precedent’ to confirm Supreme Court nominee this close to an election

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is on track for a speedy confirmation, but Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., told “Special Report” Wednesday that he’s concerned about some aspects of her judicial philosophy.

Coons explained that he had asked Barrett during a phone call earlier in the day about her law review writings, as well as her experience as a clerk for and a follower of the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

He also asked Barrett if she stood by her previous criticisms of the Affordable Care Act, which is on the court’s docket this term.

“I spoke today with a Delawarean … who owns a small business,” he said. “She and her daughter have pre-existing conditions. She’s anxious about the future of the Affordable Care Act … If the court strikes down the ACA, that will take away protections from half of all Americans. And that’s something that Judge Barrett wouldn’t speak to specifically.”


Coons said he found it alarming that Barrett would not provide specific comments about her view of “precedent” in cases involving issues like voting, labor reproductive and LGBTQ rights.

“She wouldn’t make any specific commitments, but I did press her on her view, repeatedly stated, that we should be willing to overturn long-settled cases,” he said.

“The questions I did ask of Judge Barrett today that are appropriate are about her judicial philosophy, whether she’s someone who believes in a living Constitution or in originalism, and what that would mean for the real lives of daily Middle America in terms of things like health care,” he added.

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