Schumer's office says he was referencing justices paying 'political price'

Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats blast Trump after report reveals he avoided income taxes for 10 years: 'Disgusting' Biden refuses to say whether he would support expanding Supreme Court Schumer says Trump tweet shows court pick meant to kill off ObamaCare MORE (D-N.Y.) said his reference to Supreme Court Justices Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughManchin opposes adding justices to the court Trump suggests Supreme Court nominee would tip panel against Roe v. Wade Senate GOP set to vote on Trump's Supreme Court pick before election MORE and Neil GorsuchNeil GorsuchTrump suggests Supreme Court nominee would tip panel against Roe v. Wade Senate GOP set to vote on Trump's Supreme Court pick before election Confirmation hearing for Trump's Supreme Court pick to start Oct. 12 MORE “pay[ing] the price” if they rule in favor of rolling back abortion rights was in reference to political blowback, and accused Chief Justice John Roberts of echoing a “deliberate misinterpretation” of his remarks.

“Sen. Schumer’s comments were a reference to the political price Senate Republicans will pay for putting these justices on the court, and a warning that the justices will unleash a major grassroots movement on the issue of reproductive rights against the decision,” Schumer spokesman Justin Goodman said in a statement.

“For Justice Roberts to follow the right wing’s deliberate misinterpretation of what Sen. Schumer said, while remaining silent when President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments Ocasio-Cortez: Trump contributed less in taxes 'than waitresses and undocumented immigrants' Third judge orders Postal Service to halt delivery cuts MORE attacked Justices [Sonia] Sotomayor and [Ruth Bader] Ginsberg last week, shows Justice Roberts does not just call balls and strikes,” Goodman added.

Roberts issued a rare statement Wednesday afternoon after Schumer, referencing a major abortion case in which the Supreme Court heard opening arguments this morning, said: “I want to tell you, Gorsuch, I want to tell you, Kavanaugh, you have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price … you won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions."

"Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous," Roberts said in the statement. "All Members of the Court will continue to do their job, without fear or favor, from whatever quarter."