Connect with us


Judge Barrett: U.S. deserves SCOTUS ‘that interprets our Constitution and laws as they are written’



Screen Shot 2020 10 12 at 2.05.17 PM

Judge Amy Coney Barrett, in her opening statement Monday before the Senate Judiciary Committee, while touching on her family and personal life, also emphasized that she would interpret the Constitution as it is “written.”

“I believe Americans of all backgrounds deserve an independent Supreme Court that interprets our Constitution and laws as they are written,” the circuit judge said. “And I believe I can serve my country by playing that role.”

WATCH: Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s full opening statement.

Senate Democrats have been clamoring to get Judge Barrett to speak about Roe v. Wade, with liberals fearing that if Barrett, who is devoutly Catholic, is appointed to the court, she will help overturn the landmark ruling on abortion. They have been wanting Barrett to speak directly about the issue.

RELATED: Sen. Kennedy recounts Kavanaugh hearings: It was ‘like the cantina bar scene out of Star Wars’

Barrett, who identifies as an originalist, also touted her time clerking for Justice Antonin Scalia as part of doubling down on her conservative-originalist bonafides, saying that Justice Scalia’s reasoning “shaped me.”

“His judicial philosophy was straightforward: A judge must apply the law as written, not as the judge wishes it were,” she said. “Sometimes that approach meant reaching results that he did not like. But as he put it in one of his best known opinions, that is what it means to say we have a government of laws, not of men.”

Barrett then highlighted her beliefs about the court’s role in the public life of a free society.

“Courts have a vital responsibility to enforce the rule of law, which is critical to a free society. But courts are not designed to solve every problem or right every wrong in our public life,” she said. “The policy decisions and value judgments of government must be made by the political branches elected by and accountable to the People. The public should not expect courts to do so, and courts should not try.”

With the first day of confirmation hearings over, three more days of hearings remain. Tuesday and Wednesday will allow senators to question Judge Barrett on a variety of topics and allow her to respond accordingly. Thursday will see outside witnesses testify before the committee for or against the appointment of Barrett. It is expected that on October 22 the committee will vote to move her nomination to the Senate floor to appoint her to the Supreme Court. Assuming all goes according to plan, the full Senate is expected to vote on her confirmation on October 29—less than a week before the presidential election.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

You may like

Continue Reading


Elizabeth Warren Acknowledges Unintended Consequences of Obamacare



Elizabeth Warren

Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, a longtime supporter of the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, is now acknowledging the unintended consequences of the healthcare legislation, particularly its impact on industry consolidation and rising healthcare prices.

Warren, who has been a vocal proponent of Obamacare, has recently had what the Wall Street Journal reported as an “epiphany” regarding the consequences of the healthcare law. In a letter addressed to the Health and Human Services Department inspector general, Warren, along with Senator Mike Braun of Indiana, expressed concerns about vertically-integrated healthcare companies potentially increasing prescription drug costs and evading federal regulations.

According to reports from Fox News, the bipartisan letter highlighted issues with the nation’s largest health insurers allegedly bypassing Obamacare’s medical loss ratio (MLR). According to Warren, these insurers, through vertical integration, have manipulated the system, leading to “sky-high prescription drug costs and excessive corporate profits.”

The senators detailed how conglomerates, like UnitedHealth Group, with ownership across various healthcare sectors, could inflate medical payments to pharmacies and, by realizing those payments on the pharmacy side, appear to comply with MLR requirements while retaining more profits.

Moreover, despite the Democrats’ argument that the MLR would benefit patients, it has incentivized insurers to merge with or acquire pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), retail and specialty pharmacies, and healthcare providers. This, in turn, has made healthcare spending less transparent, as insurers can allegedly shift profits to their affiliates by increasing reimbursements.

Warren, who has consistently voted against Obamacare repeal efforts, notably advocated for a “Medicare for All” proposal during her 2020 presidential campaign. Despite her prior support for the healthcare law, Warren’s recent concerns about its unintended consequences have raised questions about the long-term effects of Obamacare and its impact on the healthcare industry.

You may like

Continue Reading