Read a PDF of our statement here.

In response to the completion of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Supreme Court nomination hearing for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) President and Director-Counsel Sherrilyn Ifill issued the following statement:

“Judge Barrett’s troubling Judiciary Committee testimony underscores and deepens the urgency of the concerns highlighted in our report opposing her nomination to the nation’s highest court. At the hearing this week, Judge Barrett demonstrated an unwillingness to show independence from President Trump, exhibited a startling ignorance regarding voter discrimination in this country, and displayed disdain for the overall process through her repeated refusal to directly answer straightforward questions. Specifically, Judge Barrett:

  • Refused to commit to recusing herself from participating in any case involving a dispute over the outcome of the current presidential election;
  • Refused to state that presidents should commit to a peaceful transfer of power:
  • Refused to agree that the President cannot pardon himself;
  • Appeared not to know that voter intimidation is a violation of federal law;
  • Refused to agree that voter suppression is an ongoing problem;
  • Refused to agree that Griswold v. Connecticut, the case that upheld the constitutionality of married couples access to contraception, and that underlays the entire line of reproductive rights cases, was correctly decided – affirmations that were made by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Elena Kagan, and Clarence Thomas at their confirmation hearings; and
  • Refused, beyond six cases she called “super-precedent,” to commit to stare decisis – the legal principle that asserts that courts should follow prior decisions when deciding a case with similar facts.

“As the Judiciary Committee prepares to vote on Judge Barrett’s nomination next week – and as the full Senate prepares to vote soon thereafter, we stand by our opposition to this nomination. Beyond the substantive concerns about her record, there remains the reality of the unconscionable process of moving the nomination forward in the midst of an election where over 17 million votes have already been cast and as millions of people continue to suffer from the COVID-19 pandemic. LDF calls on Senators to stop this illegitimate process and help preserve the integrity of the Senate, the Supreme Court, and American democracy itself.”

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Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Follow LDF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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