State Watch

Harris slams Trump's Supreme Court pick as an attempt to 'destroy the Affordable Care Act'

Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) on Saturday slammed President Trump's decision to nominate Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, alleging both the president and the GOP want to "destroy the Affordable Care Act" and access to abortion. 

"From day one, President Trump made clear that he had a litmus test for Supreme Court Justices - destroy the Affordable Care Act's protections for people with preexisting conditions and overturn our right to make our own health care decisions," Harris said in a statement shortly after Trump officially announced Barrett's nomination at the White House .  

Barrett, a conservative and Trump-appointed federal appeals court judge, is slated to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the court, pending a confirmation vote from the Senate. 

Ginsburg died of complications from pancreatic cancer last week, spurring a partisan battle in Washington as Republicans sprint to get Barrett confirmed before Election Day.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has shored up votes from almost every Republican in the upper chamber, all but ensuring that Barrett will be confirmed. 

Democrats argue that whoever wins the November election should fill the vacancy, and they have accused the Senate GOP of hypocrisy after they blocked a hearing for former President Obama's Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016.

At the time, prominent Republicans including McConnell and Sen Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) argued that a justice should be chosen by whoever wins the 2016 election. 

Democrats have said that Trump is rushing to fill the vacancy so a conservative judge can weigh in on an administration-backed lawsuit seeking to strike down the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

 

"President Trump, [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans will stop at nothing to destroy the Affordable Care Act's protections for 130 million Americans with preexisting health conditions," Harris added in her statement. 

The vice presidential nominee noted that Republicans moved quickly on the nomination while chambers of Congress have yet to come to an agreement to pass another coronavirus stimulus package. 

"Republicans are desperate to get Judge Barrett confirmed before the Supreme Court takes up this case in November and millions of Americans will suffer for their power play," Harris continued, referring to the ACA lawsuit. 

The Supreme Court is slated to hear arguments about the lawsuit just one week after the Nov. 3 election. 

Harris, another member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, also indicated Saturday that she would "strongly oppose" the nomination. 

"With the next Supreme Court Justice set to determine the fate of protections for those with preexisting health conditions, and reproductive health options, I will continue to fight on behalf of the people and strongly oppose the president's nomination," Harris said.

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