Sen. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota said a conservative judge should be confirmed to fill the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s now-vacant seat because it would provide a “cushion” that ensures the court will fall on the conservative side of issues, including most notably the Affordable Care Act.
The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in a case brought by a coalition of Republican state attorneys general and the Trump administration against the Affordable Care Act shortly after the election. If the court rules that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, it would have a sprawling impact on how Americans receive health care, with millions potentially losing their health care while the coronavirus pandemic still rages.
Speaking Wednesday to Tony Perkins, president of the anti-LGBTQ hate group Family Research Council, on Perkins’ “Washington Watch” radio show, Cramer said he was confident that the U.S. Senate would vote to confirm whatever judge that President Donald Trump nominates to the Supreme Court this weekend. Perkins argued that appointing another judge to the Supreme Court would “actually shift the balance” unlike prior appointments that failed to install a “consistently constitutionally aligned court.”
“This could be the first time we see a shift in the court makeup to where you actually have a 6-3 conservative-constitutionalist viewpoint,” Perkins said. “That, to me, given how the left is so tied to the court—that’s how they get all of their policies through—this is going to be an epic battle.”
Cramer told Perkins that appointing another devoutly conservative judge would provide the court with a more reliable conservative tilt.
“While it would be a 6-3 conservative-leaning court, let’s face it: We’ve had some disappointments among people who we thought were going to be conservative. Just recently, Judge [Neil] Gorsuch’s decision, and he wrote the Court’s majority decision on applying gender identity, for example, to the 1964 Civil Rights Act. I don’t know how many mental gymnastics you have to do to come up with that one.”
“Or, obviously, Chief Justice [John] Roberts position on a number of things, including the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act,” Cramer continued. “So, there’s enough disappointments along the way that we need a 6-3 cushion, if you will, just to ensure that we have a majority.”
Perkins went on to argue that whoever is nominated to the court must have a well-established record against abortion access, unlike prior nominees.
“The strategy of the past has been stealth nominees. We don’t really have a record on these things, so we can just kind of push them through without raising any red flags,” Perkins said, going on to praise Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri for pledging to only vote for a nominee who says that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided.
“That’s the only way we’re going to get justices that we know understand the boundaries of the Constitution,” Perkins said. “This wink-and-a-nod and ‘trust us’ just doesn’t work anymore.”
“No, it doesn’t,” Cramer said.