Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., on Monday denounced President Donald Trump for making opposition to Roe v. Wade a “litmus test” for his Supreme Court nominee and for choosing an anti-abortion adviser to compile a list of possible picks.
Just hours before Trump was expected to announce his nominee to replace the retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, the New York Democrat took to the Senate floor to demand whomever Trump selects as his nominee, “U.S. Senators and the American people should expect an affirmative statement of support” for the 1973 ruling that legalized abortion.
“The American people deserve to know what kind of a justice President Trump’s nominee would be,” he demanded. “President Trump is the one that made the litmus test for his nominee, not us. The onus is on his nominee to show where he or she might stand.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., pushed back on Schumer’s complaints, saying, “This far left rhetoric comes out every single time. The apocalypse never comes. Americans see beyond this far left mongering . . . Senators should do the same.”
Schumer also laid into Trump’s judicial adviser, Leonard Leo of The Federalist Society, who helped compile a list of 25 possible candidates for the SCOTUS justice.
“No one has been more dedicated to overturning Roe v. Wade than the very man that chose the list of 25,” Schumer charged. “That’s what we’re up against here. That’s why America is on tender hooks, so worried about any choice from this list.”
“In the old days, the president would consult with Republicans and Democrats in the Senate on a qualified judge and after careful deliberation, nominate a jurist that could get support,” Schumer added. “What we have here is the opposite.”
Trump instead has “gone to two far hard-right groups, the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society — asked them, not the Senate, to advise and consent on a Supreme Court nomination,” Schumer railed.
“If that nominee is from the pre-approved list selected by Leo and the Heritage Foundation, every one ought to understand what it means for the freedom of women to make their own healthcare decisions, and for the protection for Americans with preexisting conditions. Those rights will be gravely threatened.”
Read on The Source