The hearing that Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell, and Trump are rushing through has given Democrats a national platform on the pandemic and healthcare.
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) said in his opening statement:
America’s worried about one thing above all else right now, and it’s our health. This hearing itself is a microcosm of trump’s dangerous ineptitude in dealing with the co-vid pandemic. Trump can’t even keep the white house safe. Here it’s the chairman’s job to see to the committee’s safety. And though his words were reassuring, I don’t know who has been tested. Who should be tested? Who is a danger? What contact tracing has been done on infected and exposed senators and staff. Nothing. The whole thing just like Trump is an irresponsible botch.
The irony is that this slapdash hearing targets the Affordable Care Act. This supreme court nominee has signaled in the judicial equivalent of all caps that she believes the affordable care act must go, and that the president precedent protecting the ACA doesn’t matter. The big secretive influences behind this rush see this nominee as a judicial torpedo they are firing at the ACA.
So I hope Republicans consider what’s at stake for the many people who depend right now in this pandemic on ACA health coverage. Rhode Islanders are contacting me by the thousands asking me to say no to this nominee, mostly because they too see her as a judicial torpedo aimed at their essential protections. And my constituents want you, my colleagues, members of the Republican party, to stand up for once to Mitch McConnell and to the big donors who are driving this process, and for the sake of regular people say stop.
Rep. Sheldon Whitehouse is a perfect example of how Democrats are using the Coney Barrett hearing as a platform to hammer Trump and the GOP on healthcare and the pandemic. pic.twitter.com/9bkrvCL2KU
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) October 12, 2020
Republicans have engaged in nothing, but an endless series of strategic failures under Donald Trump, and the decision to ram Amy Coney Barrett through the Senate could end up costing them control of the entire federal government.
While Republicans are living for the moment, Democrats are playing the long-game. If they win the election, they can immediately replace the ACA when the Supreme Court kills it. They can make Roe V. Wade the law of the land. They can enact reform to kill Citizens United. The Supreme Court will become a lot less relevant if Democrats control the federal government.
Republicans will get their Supreme Court justice, but Democrats are using their strategic blunder to get control of the unfettered ability to make policy and federal laws for years to come.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association