Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) thanked his Democrat colleagues for their behavior throughout Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s hearings — specifically for “not going down the Kavanaugh road.”
On Thursday, the fourth day of committee hearings for Barrett, Graham briefly complimented Democrats for how they treated Barrett, compared to the smear campaign they launched against now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh in 2018.
“I’ve made sure you had a chance to test her. You did. And I want to compliment each member of the Democratic side for being firm but not going down the Kavanaugh road,” Graham said.
He also addressed the partisan divide on confirming for Republican-nominated judges and noted that, while he was upset that the late John McCain (R-AZ) did not defeat then Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) in 2008, he “accepted the outcome” and voted for Obama’s judicial nominees.
“The bottom line is 2016 gave an outcome different than everybody in the country thought except the people who voted for the president,” Graham said, adding, “That day forward, there’s been an effort to say that election didn’t happen. It’s not legitimate. Donald Trump is not really the president.”
“There is no way you’ll ever convince me that Amy Coney Barrett is not qualified using any reasonable standards of qualification. If I applied to Justice Sotomayor and Kagan the standards you’re being imposed upon every Republican nominee since I’ve been here, I wouldn’t have voted for them,” Graham continued, crediting Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) for voting for Justice John Roberts.
Graham concluded that the qualification test is “dead and buried with everybody but me.”
“Now as to me, in August of this year, I was asked directly what about a vacancy. I said after Kavanaugh everything’s changed for me. I’m not going to sit on the sidelines and watch one of our nominees be destroyed after showing respect for two Democratic nominees,” Graham said.
“That is not right and I’m not going to do that,” he added.