Senate Democrats have signaled that they will be boycotting a Thursday committee vote to advance the Supreme Court confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
In a statement released Wednesday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee said that they "will not grant ... any further legitimacy" to Barrett's Supreme Court confirmation.
Senate Democrats oppose Barrett's confirmation ahead of the Nov. 3 election.
“This has been a sham process from the beginning," Schumer and other Democrats said in their statement, accusing Republicans of "rushing to confirm a Supreme Court Justice," to "take away health care from millions." They alleged that Barrett could cause "damage" to "health care, reproductive freedoms, the ability to vote, and other core rights that Americans cherish."
Barrett was questioned on two of four days of confirmation hearings Oct. 12-15 by members of the committee about her views on a range of issues that included abortion, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), voting rights, climate change, and LGBTQ rights. She largely refused to express her personal views by invoking precedents and rules governing judicial conduct.
“Fearing a loss at the ballot box, Republicans are showing that they do not care about the rules or what the American people want, but are concerned only with raw political power," Democrats said in their statement.
They also argued, "Republicans broke the promises they made and rules they created when they blocked Merrick Garland’s nomination for eight months under President Obama.
"Then, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that ‘the American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice.’
"Now, Republicans have moved at breakneck speed to jam through this nominee, ignoring her troubling record and unprecedented evasions, and breaking longstanding committee rules to set tomorrow’s vote."
Sen. Kelly Loeffer (R-Ga.), following a vote that shot down Schumer's attempt to adjourn the Senate, told the floor that she is "not the only one who is proud" to support Barrett's confirmation to fill the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat before the Nov. 3 election.
"Judge Barrett is a woman of remarkable intellect and character, with a judicial philosophy of originalism and as a textualist, she understands and respects the court's role to interpret the law as written. As such, I believe Judge Barrett will uphold the constitution and protect our god-given rights, including the right to life, the second amendment, free speech, and religious liberty," she said.
"The need for judges who will uphold the intent of the framers is especially clear when the left is showing their disregard for our constitution. ... That's why it's concerning that Democrats are fighting so hard to oppose an imminently qualified nominee."
She added, "Unable to criticize Judge Barrett's sterling credentials, they have resorted to scare tactics claiming she will take away health care coverage. At her confirmation hearing, Judge Barrett put those left-wing talking points to rest saying, and I quote, 'it is never appropriate for a judge to impose that judge's personal convictions whether they derive from faith or anywhere else on the law,' end quote.
"These accusations make clear that there's little Democrats fear more than strong conservative women. I know firsthand what it is like to step into public service and then be attacked by the left and the fake news. There's a playbook for trying to stop conservative women and their place in public service."
"Judge Barrett's commitment to the rule of law and equal justice are clear from her writings, decisions, and testimony ... I'm so grateful that Judge Barrett has accepted the call to serve our country. President trump could not have chosen a more qualified, impressive jurist than Judge Barrett. And I will be honored to vote to confirm her as the next United States supreme court justice."