Sep 27, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Durbin on Barrett confirmation: "We can’t stop the outcome"

Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said on ABC's "This Week" Sunday that Senate Democrats can “slow” the process of confirming Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett “perhaps a matter of hours, maybe days at the most," but that they "can’t stop the outcome."

Why it matters: Durbin confirmed that Democrats have "no procedural silver bullet" to stop Senate Republicans from confirming Barrett before the election, especially with only two GOP senators — Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine — voicing their opposition. Instead, Democrats will likely look to retaliate after the election if they win control of the Senate and White House.

What he's saying: "We can slow it down, perhaps a matter of hours, maybe days at the most, but we can't stop the outcome. What we should do is to address this now respectfully," Durbin said.

  • "But understand the context, George. Sen. Mitch McConnell, who could find no time to attend the negotiating on the coronavirus relief package that we need to put together for the pandemic facing our country, for the unemployed people, for the businesses," he continued.
  • "Sen. McConnell refused to attend those meetings. Didn't have time to do it. And yet when this vacancy occurred, he dropped everything. Now we're going hellbent on getting this done before the election. And the second thing, of course, he had to reverse the position he took four years ago, saying that we should wait for the next president to fill the vacancy."

What to watch: Durbin addressed calls by some Democrats to eliminate the legislative filibuster and expand the Supreme Court if they take control of the Senate, saying that "a conversation about the future of the Senate rules is on the table" because of McConnell's "destruction and denigration" of the institution.

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