Amy Coney Barrett's Take on Voting Rights Act Exposes Her Entire Legal Philosophy as a Lie - 2020-10-14
A single, dominant theme has emerged from Amy Coney Barrett's testimony during her confirmation hearing for the U.S. Supreme Court this week: She is, she has repeatedly said, a "textualist" who believes that the plain meaning of a statute reigns supreme, that the job of writing those laws belongs strictly to Congress, and not to the courts. She's lying — and the lie was exposed nakedly in her assessment of the Supreme Court's 2013 gutting of the Voting Rights Act.
On Wednesday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the top-ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, asked Barrett about that case, Shelby v. Holder. In particular, she asked Barrett if she agreed with her mentor Justice Antonin Scalia's conclusion that the act was a "perpetuation of racial entitlement."
Barrett declined to answer, instead repeatedly framing the case as one in which the Supreme Court decided whether the law's key provision, which required states with a history of discrimination to clear their voting law changes with the Department of Justice, was "outdated and needed to be updated from the 1960s." (The court, in a 5-4 decision, freed the states of that federal oversight.)