Wyden ‘not planning to support’ Barrett in senate vote

Democratic U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said Thursday he is not planning to support Judge Amy Coney Barrett ahead of an expected final confirmation vote in the Senate next Monday.

Posted: Oct 22, 2020 10:57 AM

EUGENE, Ore. – Democratic U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said Thursday he is not planning to support Judge Amy Coney Barrett ahead of an expected final confirmation vote in the Senate next Monday.

Following a vote of the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday to advance the nomination of Barrett, which Democrats boycotted, Wyden said the vote on the Supreme Court nominee is inconsistent with what Oregonians want.

“The decision today was certainly way out of step with what I heard in Oregon communities…over the last two weeks,” Wyden said.

Wyden called the confirmation process a “rush job” and said Barrett has not made her views clear about healthcare. Democrats fear Barrett could rule in favor of challenges to the Affordable Care Act, which Wyden says would result in healthcare coverage being taken away from thousands of Oregonians.

“This is…designed to put someone on the court that Donald Trump thinks will be sympathetic to the argument of striking down the Affordable Care Act,” Wyden said.

During hearings earlier this month, Barrett said that she is "not hostile" to the Affordable Care Act.

Wyden would not say whether he supports the idea of adding justices to the bench, an idea some progressive members of the Democratic Party have floated to expand the size of the court and add liberal justices should Joe Biden be elected and Democrats take the majority in the Senate.

“This is not the time to be talking about rules changes,” Wyden said. “There are going to be a lot of options for discussing those issues.”

Wyden said discussions about expanding the court or other rule changes could happen next year.

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