By Jessica Easthope
On day two of Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation hearing to the Supreme Court, her Catholic faith once again came under question. Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee consistently asked if and how her faith would impact decision making.
“Can you set aside whatever Catholic beliefs you have regarding any issue before you,” Senator Lindsey Graham asked Judge Barrett. “I can,” she replied. “I have done that in my time on the 7th Circuit. If I stay on the 7th Circuit I will continue to do that, and if I’m confirmed to the Supreme Court I will do that still.”
Roe v. Wade, the Obergefell case legalizing same-sex marriage and the Affordable Care Act were hot topics that prompted Judge Barrett to say when it comes to future rulings, she has no agenda.
“Let me be clear: I have made no commitments to anyone, not in this Senate, not in the White House, about how I would rule in any case,” she said.
Judge Barrett was especially pressed on Roe v. Wade by Senators Amy Klobuchar and Dianne Feinstein.
“Let me try again, do you agree with Justice Scalia’s view that Roe was wrongly decided,” asked Senator Feinstein.
“Senator I completely understand why you’re asking the question but again, I can’t pre-commit and say that I’m going in with some agenda because I’m not,” Judge Barrett answered.
During his questioning, Senator Ted Cruz said religious liberties were among the most important issues of the upcoming Presidential election. He brought up a recent Supreme Court case where they were in question, the Little Sisters of the Poor fighting for their religious right not to provide contraception coverage to employees.
“The Obama Administration litigated against the Little Sisters of the Poor seeking to fine them in order to force them to pay for abortion inducing drugs among others, truly a stunning situation when you have the federal government litigating against nuns,” said Senator Cruz.
Judge Barrett has dealt with criticism and hard questions confidently during the first two days of her confirmation. On Tuesday, she revealed she wasn’t using notes.
“Is there anything on it,” she was asked. “The letterhead that says United States Senate,” Judge Barrett said.
Judge Barrett has two more days of questioning by the 22-member Senate Judiciary Committee ahead of her.