Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman James Comer (1st District of Kentucky)
There’s a simple explanation for why liberal politicians and activists are up in arms about President Trump’s outstanding nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
Democrats view the highest court in the land as an instrument for rubber-stamping their radical policy ideas. They see the court as a superlegislature that they can weaponize to institute far-left policies repeatedly rejected by voters through their elected representatives.
They are disappointed that Barrett won’t play their games and submit to a political agenda, in keeping with her responsibility as a judge under the Constitution.
We have seen their misguided expectations of judges on full display in this week’s marathon confirmation hearings. Pelted with numerous questions about political issues, such as climate change and government-run healthcare, Barrett stood firm in the principle that she would decline to act inappropriately as a policymaker by predetermining any issue that might come before the court.
As outlined in the Constitution, the job of the judicial branch is to interpret the law, not make law. The way to change policy in the United States is through the leaders we elect at the ballot box, not through our judicial system. The people have the power to enact policies, not appointed judges with lifetime appointments.
But the only option for Democratic leaders seeking to push extreme ideologies on the people is to receive a judicial blessing for overreaching executive actions. For example, even with huge Democratic majorities in 2010, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid were unable to ram a partisan cap-and-trade bill through Congress that would have decimated America’s energy economy. The response from the Obama administration was to use blatantly unconstitutional executive actions to implement what Congress could not pass.
Thankfully, the court did not err on the side of judicial activism when it struck down then-President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan, which would have wiped away countless middle-class jobs. The Supreme Court appropriately ruled that Obama could not single-handedly enact policies simply because Congress rejected them.
But with a more liberal Supreme Court, a wish list of unilateral executive actions would suddenly be on the table for a liberal president, free from the constraints of constitutional checks and balances. That is why the thought of another Trump-appointed justice, whose judicial philosophy would follow the original meaning of the Constitution, is a scary thought for the Left.
It’s also why Democratic leaders are resorting to the tactics of schoolyard bullies, threatening to retaliate against a confirmation by packing the Supreme Court if they find themselves in power after the election. This desperate threat comes despite the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s public opposition to expanding the size of the Supreme Court out of fear that it would inject excessive partisanship into the federal judiciary.
The stakes for the Supreme Court are very high, and if you’re a senator who cares about the rule of law, you have no choice but to support confirming Barrett to the Supreme Court. Despite liberal threats and mainstream media activism, it appears that Trump’s unquestionably qualified nominee is headed to the Supreme Court after a tremendous performance in committee.
Her ideology is rooted in the Constitution, and she will faithfully ensure that lawmaking power belongs to the people’s chosen representatives, not unelected mandarins in black robes. When the voters elected Trump and retained Republican Senate majorities in 2016 and 2018, they expected no less.
Rep. James Comer, a Republican, serves as the ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform and represents Kentucky’s 1st Congressional District.