The ceremony planned at the White House comes a month after a similar event was linked to a COVID-19 outbreak that preceded Trump’s own infection. Barrett will succeed liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died last month.

At the ceremony, conservative Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas will administer one of the two oaths of office that justices have to take, according to a White House official.

Chief Justice John Roberts will administer the separate judicial oath at the court on Tuesday, the court said in a statement.

Demonstrators opposed to the confirmation of President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, dressed as characters from ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ arrested on Captiol Hill last week.Credit:AP

Trump pressed the Senate to confirm Barrett, 48, to the lifetime post before the November 3 election, which would create a 6-3 conservative majority on the top US judicial body.

Senate Minority Chuck Schumer said the Republican majority was “lighting its credibility on fire” by proceeding with the vote so close to the election after blocking Democratic President Barack Obama’s election-year nominee in 2016.

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“The truth is this nomination is part of a decades-long effort to tilt the judiciary to the far right,” he added.

Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell defended Barrett’s nomination.

“We don’t have any doubt, do we, that if the shoe was on the other foot, they’d be confirming,” McConnell said. “You can’t win them all, and elections have consequences.”

No nominee to the Supreme Court had ever been confirmed by the Senate this close to a presidential election.

Trump has said he expects the court to decide the outcome of the election between him and Democrat Joe Biden and wants Barrett to participate on any election-related cases that go before the justices.

Barrett, a federal appeals court judge, is Trump’s third selection for the court, enabling him to remake it in dramatic fashion as part of his success in moving the broader federal judiciary to the right since taking office in 2017.

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Barrett is expected to participate in arguments on November 10 in a case in which Trump and Republican-led states are seeking to invalidate the Affordable Care Act. The 2010 healthcare law, also known as Obamacare, has helped millions of Americans obtain medical insurance and barred private insurers from denying medical coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.

Barrett has criticised previous rulings upholding Obamacare but said during her confirmation hearing she had no agenda to invalidate the measure.

During her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee two weeks ago, Barrett, a favourite of Christian conservatives, irked Democrats by sidestepping questions on abortion, presidential powers, climate change, voting rights, Obamacare and other issues.



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