By | Been Written
Contributing Writer | Telegraph Local
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) delayed Senate votes for two weeks after at least three Senate members tested positive for COVID -19. casting doubt on the fast confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court — though he vowed the confirmation hearing will occur on Oct. 12 as planned.
Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Thom Tillis of North Carolina, who sit on the Judiciary Committee, tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday — just days after attending a White House event where President Donald Trump nominated Barrett.
Multiple attendees of that event, including Trump, have tested positive in the week since the ceremony, which featured many people not wearing masks and not observing social distancing protocols, according to ABC 7 News.
Republican Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin has tested positive for coronavirus after being exposed to someone with the virus earlier this week
Who is Amy Coney Barrett?
A graduate of Rhodes College and Notre Dame Law School, she clerked for the late Justice Antonin Scalia before pursuing a career as a litigator and professor. Following a bipartisan vote by the Senate in 2017, Barrett was confirmed as a Federal judge.
In political terms, Barrett is the dream candidate for conservative Republicans and the nightmare candidate for Democrats.
For Republicans, the 48-year-old is a young and personally unassailable nominee.
A devout Catholic, she is the mother of seven, including a child with Down syndrome and two children she and her husband, Jesse Barrett, adopted from Haiti. She is beloved in her community and by her students at Notre Dame Law School, where she taught for 15 years; she was voted best professor three times and still teaches part-time at the school.
What Happens Next?
The Senate committee is hoping for Republicans Tillis and Lee, as well as Sen. Ron Johnson, to have recovered from the coronavirus and be able to attend a floor vote by the end of the month, which is when the GOP hopes to have Barrett confirmed, according to Fox News.
All 10 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote a letter to Graham urging him to delay the nomination.
“The Senate Judiciary Committee will convene on October 12th as Chairman Graham has scheduled to begin confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court,” Mitch McConnell said in the statement.
“The Senate’s floor schedule will not interrupt the thorough, fair, and historically supported confirmation process previously laid out by Chairman Graham.”