Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer failed on Monday to adjourn the Senate until after the election in an effort to stop the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the US Supreme Court.
Republicans blasted the move pointing out that this would also sink any effort to pass a coronavirus stimulus relief package.
Schumer moved to adjourn the Senate until Nov. 9, with the caveat that if a coronavirus relief deal was reached by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that they would return to vote.
“I am forcing a vote tonight to adjourn the Senate until after the November election” Schumer tweeted on Monday, claiming the Republicans were “using an illegitimate process to jam through a Supreme Court nominee to rip away health care from millions.“
RT reports: Schumer’s proposal failed, with the Senate voting 48 to 42 to “table” the motion – that is, not consider it any further – on Monday evening.
Barrett was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the seat vacated by last month’s death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Schumer and the Democrats have argued the nomination should wait for after the presidential election. Republicans have countered that there are no laws, rules or precedents against confirming a justice under the present circumstances.
Schumer’s ploy to adjourn the Senate was quickly blasted by Republicans, who pointed out that this would also sink any effort to pass a coronavirus stimulus and relief package.
The Senate majority has refused to consider the $2.2 trillion proposal passed by the Democrat-led House of Representatives, calling it a partisan “wish list.”
On Sunday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) insisted the White House and the Senate must accept her bill and gave them 48 hours to comply.
Meanwhile, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and five other Republicans have introduced a constitutional amendment that would block Democrats from “packing” the Supreme Court – adding justices beyond the customary nine – should they gain the Senate majority and Joe Biden be elected president.
“The Supreme Court of the United States shall be composed of nine justices,” says the text of the amendment, introduced on Monday by Cruz and co-sponsored by Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Martha McSally of Arizona, Kelly Loeffler of Georgia, and Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi.
Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris have avoided answering whether they would pack the court, while Democrats argued in the mainstream media that appointing Barrett would amount to “packing.”
Admitting they don’t have the votes to stop Barrett’s nomination, Democrats have used the confirmation hearings to tell the American public that she would make abortion illegal and take away their healthcare. Barrett has promised to interpret the law “as written, not as the judge wishes it were.”
A formal vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee to advance Barrett’s nomination is scheduled for October 22. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) said he would bring the nomination to the floor for a vote on Friday, October 23 and “stay on it until we’re finished,” adding that the Republicans have the votes necessary for the confirmation.