Fox News analyst Juan Williams says President Donald Trump nominating Amy Coney Barrett to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court is “a power grab,” noting that his “actions remove all pretense about justices as impartial, learned people upholding the law.”
“What we have now at the very top of the American judicial system are nine politicians wearing the robes of Supreme Court justices,” Williams wrote in an op-ed for The Hill.
“This fits with Trump transforming the Centers for Disease Control from a trusted source of information on heath to a political agency being used to minimize his failed handling of a pandemic,” he wrote. “It fits with Attorney General William Barr using the Justice Department to protect Trump and his pals — from Michael Flynn to Roger Stone — while looking to produce damaging charges against Democrats. It fits with Trump undermining public trust in the FBI and CIA after they found evidence of Russian interference to help him in both the 2016 election and the current election. Much of that can be repaired over time beginning with a new president. But the Supreme Court is different. Supreme Court justices get lifetime appointments. And in a country founded on the idea that it is a nation of laws, a lack of trust in the Supreme Court’s ability to be impartial portends long-term damage.”
“Keep in mind, Trump has no mandate to dismantle trust in the court,” he continues. “To the contrary, he is a president who lost the popular vote by almost 3 million votes. His job approval rating has never reached 50 percent in the RealClearPolitics polling average. If you want to rip out your hair, consider that if Trump’s latest nominee is confirmed it will mean that 15 of the last 19 Supreme Court justices have been named by Republican presidents.”
Democrats have railed against what they’ve said is the Republican hypocrisy of rushing to appoint a new Supreme Court justice. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has already announced that he would like to bring President Trump’s nominee to the Senate floor for a confirmation hearing and a vote. In 2016, McConnell infamously denied Merrick Garland, former President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, a hearing, arguing that it would be inappropriate for a president to appoint a new justice during an election year.
Last week, Trump nominated federal judge Amy Coney Barrett to replace Ginsburg and has received Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s endorsement. She was one of President Trump’s finalists for the Supreme Court in 2018, the year he nominated Kavanaugh. She has earned praise among conservatives for being a reliable conservative jurist on matters related to abortion, immigration, and the Second Amendment.