US Senate to vote on Barrett nomination to Supreme Court

AFP
The US Senate will vote on Monday, eight days ahead of the presidential election, to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
AFP
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US Senate to vote on Barrett nomination to Supreme Court
AFP

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell speaks during a news conference following the weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on October 20 in Washington, DC. 

The US Senate will vote on Monday, eight days ahead of the presidential election, to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, the Senate Majority Leader said on Tuesday.

"We'll be voting to confirm justice-to-be Barrett next Monday," Republican Senator Mitch McConnell said at a press conference.

"I think that will be another signature accomplishment in our effort to put on the courts, the federal courts, men and women who believe in the quaint notion that maybe the job of a judge is to actually follow the law," McConnell said.

Barrett, 48, was named by President Donald Trump to replace the late liberal icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the nation's highest court.

Her confirmation by the Senate to the lifetime post would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the nine-member panel.

Democratic senators urged their Republican colleagues to honor a pledge of four years ago not to seat a justice close to a presidential election, but the appeal failed and Republicans forged ahead with the plan to put Barrett on the court.

Republicans have a 53-47 majority in the Senate, and although two Republican senators have said they will not vote, Barrett is virtually assured of confirmation.

A long-time law professor at the University of Notre Dame and an appeals court judge for the past three years, Barrett follows a somewhat fundamentalist school of US judicial thought, originalism, and is a devout Catholic.

During her confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week, she steadfastly avoided expressing her legal views, saying she would not address theoretical issues, but only judge cases as they come, on their own merits.

The Republican-majority Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to approve her nomination on Friday, sending it to the full Senate for the vote which McConnell said is expected on Monday.

Trump has said he wants Barrett in place if the election results are fought up to the high court, as in 2000.

Barrett refused to say if she would recuse herself if, in the days after joining the Supreme Court, she has to review any legal challenge to the results of the election.

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