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Republicans Confirm Amy Coney Barrett Before The Election. How Should Democrats Respond?

Trump announces his appointment of Amy Coney Barrett at the Rose Garden of the White House on Saturday, September 26, 2020.

  On this edition of Your Call, we’re discussing the Supreme Court confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett, a 48-year-old conservative appeals court judge. After Democrats unsuccessfully tried to filibuster the nomination, Republicans only needed 52 votes to confirm her.

The vote was 52 to 48. Every Democratic Senator and one Republican Senator, Susan Collins, voted against her. It was the first time in 151 years that a justice was confirmed without a single vote from the minority party, according to the New York Times.

With a 6-3 conservative majority, the Affordable Care Act, reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, voting rights, climate change legislation, workers’ rights, and more are at stake. Constitutional law experts say it's time for 18-year term limits for justices. Others say Democrats should add justices to rebalance the court.  


Mark Joseph Stern, staff writer at Slate covering courts and the law and author of American Justice 2019: The Roberts Court Arrives

Sabeel Rahman, president of Demos, Associate Professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School, and author ofCivic Power: Rebuilding American Democracy in an Era of Crisis

Web Resources: 

The Washington Post: Senate confirms Barrett to Supreme Court, cementing its conservative majority

The Guardian, Sabeel Rahman: The US supreme court has become a threat to democracy. Here's how we fix it 

Slate, Mark Joseph Stern: North Carolina, voting rights, and the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals: Judges claim it's unconstitutional to expand voting rights. 

FRONTLINE: Supreme Revenge 

Common Dreams: Constitutional Law Experts Endorse Democrats' Bill to Create 18-Year Term Limits for Supreme Court Justices